Written by Kumudu Jayawardana
04 Feb, 2014 | 1:43 am
Pakistani politician Imran Khan will not be part of a team representing the Taliban in peace talks with the government, his party has made clear.
The ex-cricketer, who strongly favours talks, was an unlikely choice by the militants to be a negotiator.
His Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) says he is not needed at the talks as another party figure is on the government team.
A preliminary meeting between the two sides gets under way in Islamabad on Tuesday after months of violence.
Although the PTI party strongly favours negotiations, a statement on Sunday said that Mr Khan would probably prefer to assist the peace process in another role.
“The core committee of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaaf appreciated [the] Taliban’s offer to our chairman Imran Khan to become part of their committee,” PTI spokeswoman Shireen Mazari told the AFP news agency on Monday.
She said senior party figure Rustam Shah Mohmand was already on the government team and could represent the PTI at the talks.
Negotiators nominated by the government and the Taliban are due to chart a “roadmap” for dialogue at their first meeting.
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