ISLAMABAD: On Wednesday, Prime Minister Imran Khan giving an interview to CNN’s Becky Anderson said that if the world wants to achieve peace in Afghanistan, it should “engage with the Taliban” and they should also be “incentivized” on issues such as inclusive government and women’s rights. During the interview at his residence Bani Gala, Imran Khan talked about various issues including the developing situation in Afghanistan, Pakistan’s role in maintaining regional peace and Islamabad’s relationship with Washington. While talking about his contribution to the country, he said that under his leadership the country is now seeking a “more pragmatic approach in dealing with Afghanistan’s new leaders.” Moreover, the premier told the outlet that it’s indeed a ‘historical time’ for Afghanistan. If the Taliban succeeds in forming an inclusive human-centric government then it would be a great victory in terms of achieving peace nearly after 40 years. “But if it goes wrong and which is what we are really worried about, it could go to chaos. The biggest humanitarian crisis, a huge refugee problem, and the reemergence of terrorism ” he said, adding that since Afghanistan is facing hard times, the Taliban regime is looking towards the world for aid. “[The provision of aid] could be used to push the group towards the right direction and legitimacy,” he said, emphasizing the country should remain independent and should not be controlled by outside forces. “No puppet government in Afghanistan is supported by the people,” he said. “So rather than sitting here and thinking that we can control them, we should incentivize them. Because Afghanistan, this current government, clearly feels that without international aid and help, they will not be able to stop this crisis. So we should push them in the right direction.” He further said that the world should give the Taliban their due time as they have recently taken control of the country until they could fulfil their promises and form a legitimate government. Imran Khan’s take on women’s rights When asked whether he supports the Taliban’s treatment of women, especially excluding them from sports, PM Khan said: “I feel very strongly that it is a mistake to think that someone from the outside will give Afghan women their rights [because] Afghan women are strong. Give them time, and they will get their rights.” Do women have the same rights as men in public and private lives? PM Khan said: “Women should have the ability in society to fulfil their potential in life [but] you cannot impose women’s rights in Afghanistan from abroad.” Pakistan’s mistake to support US in its war on terror Replying to the question about the decision of the United States and NATO forces to withdraw from Afghanistan, PM Khan said that the “US should have attempted a political settlement with the Taliban from a position of strength,” the outlet said. According to PM Khan, Pakistan’s decision to support the US in its War on Terror left thousands of Pakistanis to be killed in terrorist attacks by militant groups. “Just because we sided with the US, we became an ally of the US after 9/11 and the war in Afghanistan. The suffering this country went through with at one point there were 50 militant groups attacking our government… on top of it, they must also know there were 480 drone attacks by the US in Pakistan,” he told the outlet. Answering a question, PM Khan said that intelligence agencies stay connected with different groups, just like the CIA does. “The US does not know about the on the ground situation, which is why it does not trust Pakistan.” He also criticized the US for repeatedly accusing Pakistan of supporting terrorism and said: “What are these safe-havens? The area of Pakistan along the border of Afghanistan had the heaviest surveillance by the United States drones … surely they would have known if there were any safe havens?” Prime Minister said that Pakistan was not in a position to take military action against the Afghan Taliban because they were not attacking Pakistan. “Pakistan had its internal matters to look at, such as attacks from the Tehreek-i-Taliban Pakistan (TTP).” “I cannot destroy my country to fight someone else’s war,” he said. “My responsibility would have been to the people of my country.” PM Khan also said that he hasn’t met President Joe Biden after the Taliban took over Afghanistan. “He did not call as he is a busy man,” the PM said.