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What Would Happen After NATO Leaves Afghanistan?

Asia Research Centre public lecture

Date: Tuesday 12 November 2013 
Time: 6.30-8pm 
Venue: NAB 2.04, New Academic Building
Speaker: Zahid Hussain
Chair: Professor Athar Hussain

By the end of 2014 the NATO coalition troops led by the US will leave Afghanistan. Their departure does not signal victory over the Taliban; it is forced by a military stalemate without an end. What would happen after their departure is shrouded in uncertainty. The prospect of the hoped-for peace is remote. The likely outcome is a civil war, much more fierce and widespread than the one fought during recent years. That civil war will not be confined to Afghanistan but will also spill over into Pakistan. The two countries share a 1500 mile border running through an inhospitable terrain consisting of mountains and deserts. The border is porous and large segments are beyond the control of either country. Both sides of the border are inhabited by people sharing common culture and language. Although the NATO coalition forces are formally forbidden to cross the border into Pakistan, the current civil war has for some time also been fought on the Pakistani side of the border via drone bombings and occasional forays.

Mr Zahid Hussain is a leading Pakistani journalist who has written extensively on Pakistan and Afghanistan. He is the author of Frontline Pakistan: The struggle with militant Islam' and 'The Scorpion's Tail: The relentless rise of Islamic militants in Pakistan and how it threatens America.

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