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SOURCE: THE WEEK

With the intra-Afghan negotiations going forward to ensure peace and stability in Afghanistan, New Delhi is concerned after latest intelligence reports revealed that Pakistan is now capitalising on creating alliances with Afghanistan-based terror outfits to ensure its relevance post negotiations and to further its interest in the country.

Latest inputs revealed that the ISI is working to form an umbrella alliance of deadly terror outfits across Afghanistan to ensure Pakistani domination in affairs of that country by exploiting these groups.

“The ISI is in a series of parallel negotiations with a number of outfits operating in Afghanistan,” said an intelligence official .

The latest inputs suggest that the spy agency is working to push the Haqqani Network to establish connections with Islamic State of Khorasan province (ISKP), an organisation where terrorists from Pakistani outfits like Jaish-e-Mohammed and Lashkar-e-Taiba have infiltrated in such a large number that the top post have now been occupied by the Pakistanis. Similarly the Islamic State-Pakistan and Lashkar-e-Jhangvi have started to work together.

It is learnt that the ISI is also trying to accelerate the operations of Taliban and infiltrate it with a greater number of cadres from Pakistani outfits. The inputs revealed that Afghanistan could witness a series of attacks like the Talibani offensive in Helmand in October, when it was able to capture a couple of important security installations in the apital city Lashkargah and elsewhere in the province.

“The fresh series of attacks can be much larger than the Helmand offensive with precise targets like Kandahar,” said the inputs.

Meanwhile, Al-Qaeda has refrained itself from getting into an aggressive mode due to engagement and commitment to ongoing negotiations. “But it is also witnessing a large infiltration of Punjabi cadres from Pakistan-based terror groups especially JEM,” said an official .

Intelligence officials said the most worrying trend is that the ISI has once again brought Gulbuddin Hekmatyar, supremo of Hezb-e-Islami to the Centre. It is learnt that he comprehensively discussed plans to work in a coalition of different stakeholders to ensure Pakistani interests in Afghanistan.

Intelligence officials said the spy agency wants to use Hekmatyar to ensure deniability in terror incidents and further its interest at the same time.

India is closely watching these developments as these attempts can lead to serious blows to the peace talks. “The game of coalitions and camouflaging is proving deadly for Afghanistan and peace in the region,” said an intelligence official.

“The stakeholders of intra-Afghan negotiations need to ensure accountability of Pakistan and hold it responsible,” he added.