Omar’s death, if true, may affect peace talks: Analysts

Create: 07/29/2015 - 13:21

KABUL (Pajhwok): Political analysts opined on Wednesday the “ possible death” of Taliban’s supreme leader Mullah Omar might lead to the group’s disintegration besides affecting the nascent peace process.
Media reports on Wednesday claimed Omar had died two or three years ago due to tuberculosis and had been buried in a remote area of southern Afghanistan. However, the report could not be verified independently.
The Presidential Palace also said it was investigating the reports. Syed Zafar Hashmi, the president’s deputy spokesman, told a crowded press conference they had received information regarding the demise of Mullah Omar through media sources.
As and when confirmed, he promised, the government would share accurate information with media and the Afghan nation. He said they were still in the process of looking at the reports.
Javed Kohistani, a military affairs analyst, feared the death of Taliban’s leader would negatively impact the ongoing peace talks. He believed the demise of Omar would split up the group into multiple factions, which would not agree on a common agenda for peace talks with the government.
He said the Taliban were inspired from Omar and continued their insurgency in a spiritual manner and in his absence, the Taliban would somehow loss their confidence.
But another political analyst Younus Fakor said Mullah Omar’s death would have no impact on the ongoing peace talks because the real leader of Taliban was Pakistan. He added the peace process would go on even if the death of Mullah Omar was confirmed.
Javed Faisal, spokesman for the Chief Executive Officer (CEO), said the death of Taliban leader would not leave any major impact on the peace talks. He said the talks had not been started with Omar as an individual, but between the Taliban as a group and the government of Afghanistan.
He said Taliban representatives, who took part in the first round of talks, had been approved by their Qatar Office. Pakistani media on Wednesday reported that the peace talks would resume in Murree near Islamabad on Friday.