Pakistan Security Brief

Pakistan cutting support for peace talks; Survey says young Pakistanis favor Sharia law over Democracy, don’t trust government; Khan dropped as Finance Minister last minute; Rangers arrest four TTP members, two LeJ members; TTP detonates IED, kills four Rangers; Six, including PPP candidate, die in Karachi violence; Muslims and Christians clash; IMF calls for end to power subsidies.

Taliban Peace Talks

  • On Tuesday, Afghan foreign ministry spokesman Janan Mosazai said that Pakistan is “cutting back on support” for peace talks with the Taliban.  Mosazai said that Pakistan “is changing the goalposts” and setting “preconditions” that require Afghanistan  to cut ties with India, that Afghan “army officers be sent to Pakistan for training and that a strategic partnership deal be signed immediately.”  The Taliban recently sent ten members and their families to settle in Qatar, possibly with the intention of setting up an office there. Afghan President Hamid Karzai traveled to Doha, Qatar, this weekend with the intention of meeting those representatives, but Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid said that “nobody from the Taliban side met with Karzai.” [1]

Domestic Politics

  • On Tuesday, the Guardian released a British Council survey of Pakistanis ranging from ages 18 to 29 asking their views on the political climate in Pakistan.  The survey found that “94% thought the country was going in the wrong direction…71% had an unfavourable opinion of the government, 67% of parliament and 69% of political parties. By contrast, 77% of young people approve of the army, while 74% were favourably inclined towards religious organizations.”  When asked about their opinions on democracy, 29% favor a democratic system, 32% favor military rule, and 38% favor rule by “Sharia.”  When asked about their political leanings, two-thirds of women and 64% of men described themselves as religious or conservative, the remainder as liberal or moderate. [2]

  • On Tuesday at the oath-taking ceremony for the interim cabinet, one of the candidates for minister, Dr. Mushtaq Khan, was asked to leave the oath table after news surfaced that his security clearance had not been approved, thus disqualifying him from taking the oath as the interim finance minister. [3]

  • On Tuesday, angry Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) activists stormed a PPP office at Liaquat Bagh, Rawalpindi, to protest what they perceived to be the “unfair distribution of tickets” for the upcoming district elections. [4]


Religious Clash in Gujranwala

International Monetary Fund

[1] “Afghanistan peace deal: Taliban talks,” The Guardian, April 2, 2013.  Available at
[2] “Pakistan’s young voters view democracy with despair, survey says,” Guardian, April 2, 2013.  Available at
[3] “Would be finance minister dropped at last minute,” Dawn, April 2, 2013.  Available at
[4] “Angry activists storm PPP office in Rawalpindi,” Dawn, April 2, 2013.  Available at
[5] “Two alleged LeJ terrorists arrested in Karachi,” The News, April 3, 2013.  Available at
“Karachi police arrest target killer accused of murdering 50 people,” The News, April 3, 2013.  Available at
“Karachi blast kills 4 Rangers personnel, many injured,” Geo, April 3, 2013.  Available at 
“Four TTP militants remanded,” The News, April 3, 2013. Available at
[6] “PPP election candidate among six gunned down,” The News, April 2, 2013.  Available at
[7] “Former Balochistan advocate general kidnapped from Quetta,” Dawn, April 3, 2013.  Available at
[8] “Young man shot dead in Peshawar,” Dawn, April 2, 2013.  Available at
[9] “Militant arrested in Mingora,” The News, April 3, 2013.  Available at
[10] “Kidnapped girl recovered in Manshera,” The News, April 3, 2013.  Available at
[11] “Man shot dead,” Dawn, April 2, 2013.  Available at
[12] “Christians, Muslims clash in Gujranwala,” Express Tribune, April 3, 2013.  Available at
[13] “Phase out power subsidies, IMF tells Pakistan,” Pakistan Today, April 3, 2013.  Available at
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