ISLAMABAD: The two-day peace talks between the outlawed Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) and the tribal elders representing the government of Pakistan are expected to conclude today (Friday) in Kabul which may determine the future prospects for a possible peace truce ‘conditional’ on resettlement of militants associated with the outfit back in their native towns.

A 50-member delegation comprising tribal elders from 13 districts and some sitting and former parliamentarians from the merged tribal districts left for Kabul on Wednesday and held talks with an eight-member TTP negotiating team on Thursday, to be continued today (Friday). The talks are being moderated by chief of the Haqqani Network Sirajuddin Haqqani who is the interim Interior Minister of Afghanistan under the Afghan Taliban as well as Afghan intelligence chief.

“This round of talks is expected to conclude on Friday (today) and the parties are likely to formulate proposals for their respective sides – TTP to their central leadership and the tribal elders to the government of Pakistan,” said a source privy to the ongoing talks.

The proposals, according to the sources, would comprise modalities based on guarantees on how to resettle the members of the TTP back in their respective native towns after a final peace truce is brokered.

The sources, both officials and within the tribal elders, currently engaged with the TTP negotiators, told Business Recorder on condition of anonymity that the round of talks between the tribal elders and the TTP would be followed by direct talks later this month between the militant group and the government of Pakistan consisting of a 10 to 12-member team from the security establishment and intelligence agencies.

“The direct sitting between the negotiating teams of the GoP and the TTP, expected to be held in the second week of this month, could be the final round of peace talks that began in October 2021,” the sources said, adding the two teams would deliberate upon the proposals to be finalised by the tribal elders and a few other sub-committees relating to issues such as release of the prisoners and compensations etc.

On Thursday, the sources said that negotiations were held among various sub-committees, as the tribal elders from 13 merged districts had been assigned to hold talks with TTP members hailing from their respective districts aimed at giving local guarantees for their resettlement once the final peace truce was brokered.

The TTP, in a statement on Thursday, maintained that the fundamental objective of its “Jihad” was to implement Islamic laws.