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Pakistan wanted an ally on its west border that can oppose India and anti-Pakistan elements. Afghan Taliban being the ideologically driven faction emerged as indirectly favoring Pakistan. Though most of the Taliban are ethnic Pashtun, their ethnicity has never taken over their ideological identity, so in both respects, the Taliban were less detrimental to Pakistan’s security challenges.
Sectarianism is so deep-rooted in our society that even the state deems it ‘normal’ and does not react unless extremist manifestations of the phenomenon start turning ugly. The state’s typical response entails the ‘concealment and appeasement’ approach, which was evident from its dealing with the recent upsurge in sectarian tensions in the country.
India with its leverage lost in Afghanistan is reportedly considering to reopen its embassy in Kabul. This comes at a time when India is seeking its role in Afghanistan; either through ‘Asia-Pacific’ group – 18th Russia-India-China (RIC) foreign ministers’ meeting, or through United States-led initiatives, such as Quad.