Reintegrating the Taliban after the Death of Osama bin Laden
- Osama bin Laden, al-Qaeda leader, was killed by US forces in Abbottabad, near Islamabad, Pakistan on 2nd May 2011. Nearly 10 years after the 9/11 terrorist attacks coordinated by al-Qaeda, this was “the most significant achievement to date” in the war against terror as pointed out by the US President Barack Obama . There has been worldwide jubilation, particularly in the US and Secretary-General of the UN, Ban Ki-moon expressed his delight as follows: „Personally, I am very much relieved by the news that justice has been done to such a mastermind of international terrorism. I would like to commend the work and the determined and principled commitment of many people in the world who have been struggling to eradicate international terrorism.‟ Since his death there has also been worldwide media frenzy and speculation about the way the operation was undertaken, how he was killed and whether or not his body was disposed in the ocean. There are also a series of questions about the possible implications of his death on a number of global security issues such as possible immediate revenge attacks by al-Qaeda against Western targets around the world; the future of al-Qaeda and whether or not it would continue to pose a security threat to the West; the withdrawal date of Western forces from Afghanistan; and the links and future of cooperation between the Taliban and al-Qaeda in Pakistan and Afghanistan. It is in such a context that the Afghanistan Peace and Reintegration Programme (APRP) Review Conference took place in Kabul on 10-11th 2011.
Published in Political Reflection Magazine Vol. 2 No. 2