Authors Posts by Salman Rafi Sheikh

Salman Rafi Sheikh

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By reaching out to Taliban, Iran makes presence felt in Afghanistan...

The very nature of the conflict in Afghanistan has made it almost impossible for the neighbouring countries to remain aloof from it or maintain...

How the Taliban have become leading actor in Afghan peace talks

While the Taliban have established their domination both politically and militarily in almost half of Afghanistan, the consequent talks with the US and the...

US withdrawal from Afghanistan showcases India’s hollow Afghan policy

When Donald Trump recently mocked India for building a library in Afghanistan, it signified a lot more than the fact that India is not...

How Pakistan is negotiating the Afghan terrain after US announcement to...

In the last week of December, Pakistani Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi visited Afghanistan, Iran, China and Russia to discuss the ongoing Afghan peace...

An all-out US defeat in Afghanistan is on the horizon

The politico-military structure that the US built in Afghanistan after forcing the Taliban out of power is shaking from its cores, facing an imminent...

With Afghan elections in April, Ghani regime caught in a bind...

Notwithstanding the importance of the on-going talks between the Afghan Taliban and the US and the participation of the former in the recently-held Moscow...

Trump’s melodrama vis-à-vis Pakistan meets ground realities

The Trump administration's renewed push to seek Pakistan's help in bringing the Afghan Taliban to the negotiating table comes as a striking contrast to...

India’s dead-end Afghan policy

While India has been investing in Afghanistan for several years, the changing dynamics of the Afghan war indicate that this economic, political and diplomatic...

US-Pakistan relations enter new phase of deterioration over Afghanistan and Taliban

US President Donald Trump’s blatant ‘game of accusations’ vis-à-vis Pakistan regarding the latter’s alleged role in hiding Osama bin Laden and “doing nothing” to...

How the Moscow factor will play in Afghanistan

While the Russian authorities were right in calling the recently held Afghan peace talks in Moscow ‘unique’ because of their ability to bring together...

Taliban-US talks: There is more to it than meets the eye

After meeting US envoy Zalmay Khalilzad, the Afghan Taliban are said to have agreed to hold a second round of talks on paving the...

India’s limited life-line in Afghanistan

While India continues to plan to expand its foothold in Afghanistan, using its alliance with the United States as its main source of support,...

Afghanistan: The big story of massive aid waste

There are ghost soldiers; ghost police officers; ghost clinics and even ghost patients in Afghanistan. There are billions of dollars spent on papers, but...

China’s discreet headway into Afghanistan

While China continues officially to deny playing a leading role in managing conflict in Afghanistan, there is also no gainsaying that China continues to...

Taliban are talking from a position of strength

While the US-Taliban talks are of paramount importance in terms of bringing the 17 years old war to an end, there remains little to...

As Taliban influence grows, dialogue without regional consensus won’t do much...

The importance of the US-Taliban direct dialogue notwithstanding, it remains unclear as to what substantial outcome this will produce without a political and geo-political...

What the Afghan war looks like after 17 years?

Afghanistan’s geopolitics has changed; the ‘war on terror’ narrative is absolutely dead given that the US is now talking to the Taliban (the erstwhile...

Pompeo claims to “reset” ties with Pakistan but makes India “strategic...

Just few days before the arrival of the US Secretary of the State, Mike Pompeo, in Pakistan, the US officially cancelled US$300 million aid...

Why Zalmay Khalilzad might be a bad choice for Taliban negotiations

The appointment of Zalmay Khalilzad as special adviser on Afghanistan has caused consternation in the region for obvious reasons: he is among several veterans...

Taliban seeks legitimacy by reforming itself as prospects of returning to...

While the war in Afghanistan has changed many things over the past 17 years, the most noticeable transformation has been the return of the...

Saudi investment in CPEC will deepen Pak ties with Riyadh and...

Pakistan has officially invited Saudi Arabia to not only invest in the geo-economically celebrated China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) but also be a strategic partner,...