Referring to the issue of women’s rights, he said the Taliban should be incentivised to “walk the talk” –pointing out that the group had said it would allow women to work and get educated….reports Asian Lite News

Urging the world to engage with the Taliban, Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan has said that there “must be hardliners within the group” (Taliban) and it can easily go back to the Taliban of 20 years ago, which would be a disaster, according to local media.

Imran Khan, in an interview with the Middle East Eye on Monday, said: “The world must engage with Afghanistan.”

According to Dawn, Khan warned of the consequences of not doing so.

“There must be hardliners within the group [and] it can easily go back to the Taliban of 20 years ago. And that would be a disaster,” he said, adding that Afghanistan could once again descend into chaos if no engagements were made and it could become a fertile ground for terrorists like ISIS, which is a worry for all countries in the region.

(Image Source ANI)

“It would be a total waste, what will the US have to show after 20 years? Therefore, a stable Afghanistan government which can then take on ISIS. And Taliban are the best bet to take on ISIS, that is the only option left.”

Asked about the lack of inclusiveness in the Taliban’s interim government, Imran Khan said that it is not present “right now” but hoped it would be in the future, adding that it was needed because Afghanistan was a diverse society, reported Dawn.

Referring to the issue of women’s rights, he said the Taliban should be incentivised to “walk the talk” –pointing out that the group had said it would allow women to work and get educated.

“Yet, the government is clearly trying to get international acceptability so it wants an inclusive government, talks about human rights and not allowing its soil to be used for terrorism by anyone,” Dawn quoted Imran Khan as saying.

Earlier, dozens of Afghan women activists on Sunday held protests in Afghanistan demanding political and social inclusion.

These women sought female representation in the caretaker government of the Taliban and said that they will not stop resisting until their role in the new government is clarified, Tolo News reported.

“Today, October 10, is World Women Solidarity Day with Afghan Women. And women from over 100 countries are due to protest in support of Afghan women,” a protester said.

“The Taliban repeatedly say that women have the right to education, work and political inclusion in the government, and they should show it in practice,” another protester said.

The Taliban have been continuously trying to portray a good image in front of the world while promising rights to women and minorities but the on-ground situation in Afghanistan shows that all these are mere words by the Taliban.

During the protest, a former government employee also expressed frustration with the Taliban and said that the government formed by the group will collapse if women are not included in decision making.

As the Taliban took control of Afghanistan once again after 20 years, experts believe that Afghan women are most likely to face an uncertain future under the group’s regime.

Days ago, veteran women’s rights activist Mehbouba Siraj had also urged the international community to fully support Afghan women amid the deteriorating situation in the war-torn nation, reported Pajhwok Afghan News. (ANI)

ALSO READ: Pak-Taliban ties: Afghan activist warns of risks worse than 9/11

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