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'Taliban are normal civilians': Pak PM Imran Khan on aiding terrorists

In the interview, Khan said that the US 'really messed it up' in Afghanistan.

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Amid accusations of providing a safe haven to militant outfit Taliban, Pakistan Prime Minister has once again made it to the headlines over his statement on the outfit. During a TV interview, Khan said that the Taliban are 'normal civilians' and Pakistan is not supposed to kill them.

In the interview with PBS Newshour that aired on Tuesday night, Khan said that the US 'really messed it up' in Afghanistan by initially trying to find a military solution and later looking for a political solution.

When questioned about a recent report claiming 10,000 Pakistani fighters have crossed over the Afghanistan border to assist the Taliban, Khan denied it, saying that those making the claims should provide evidence.

"This is absolute nonsense. Why don't they give us evidence of this?" he said. He also emphasised that his country hosts three million Afghan refugees, with a majority of them being Pashtuns, the same ethnic group as the Taliban militants.

"Now, there are camps of 500,000 people, there are camps of 100,000 people. And Taliban are not some military outfits, they are normal civilians. And if there are some civilians in these camps, how is Pakistan supposed to hunt these people down? How can you call them sanctuaries?" he asked.

Taliban-led violence has increased in Afghanistan as foreign troops are withdrawing from the war-torn country. Taliban has escalated its offensive against security forces and civilians. They are rapidly gaining territory in Afghanistan.

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