Pakistan calls for Taliban ceasefire before crunch talks

February 14, 2013 - 12:00:00 am

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan yesterday urged the Taliban to announce a 30-day ceasefire as a precursor to peace talks which the militants offered earlier this month, adding the nation had rejected their campaign of terror.

The umbrella Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) faction has stepped up attacks in recent months, leading to fears that violence could mar general elections in May.

In a video message, TTP proposed talks with Islamabad provided that certain opposition politicians, including main opposition leader Nawaz Sharif, act as guarantors. Sharif welcomed the offer but refused to be a guarantor.

“First there should be ceasefire and peace talks can be held only after it,” Interior Minister Rehman Malik said.          AFP

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