Pakistan and Afghanistan, 2014 and Beyond: Not Friends, Not Yet Enemies?

R. Zeb

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)


As the American withdrawal is approaching, the future stability of Afghanistan and its effects on the region are increasingly being debated. The predominant view is that due to the mishandling of the situation by the Americans, post 2014 Afghanistan would be unstable and the whole region especially Pakistan will face the consequences of this failure. A stable and peaceful Afghanistan is in Pakistan's interest as it will ensure that no more drugs, extremism and refugees pour into the country. Islamabad is of the view that like in 1989, the Americans would once again be leaving Afghanistan without finishing what they have started. This coupled with the increasing Indian influence in Afghanistan brings back the historical fear, which has been the driving force behind its Afghan policy since 1947, of being sandwiched between two hostile neighbours. This article flags five points: first, Islamabad has legitimate security concerns in Afghanistan; second, historically, Pakistan's security concerns regarding India are a major factor in deciding Pakistan's position in and about Afghanistan; third, Pakistan supported the Taliban government in Kabul due to its geostrategic and security concerns; fourth, there can be no solution of the Afghanistan problem without Islamabad on board; fifth, the solution to the Afghan problem lies not only in Afghanistan but also around it, in the region; therefore, a regional approach is a must. © 2013 SAGE Publications India.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)165-183
JournalJournal of South Asian Development
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2013


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