Pakistan-Taleban peace talks due to start amid dim hopes
ISLAMABAD (AFP) - Negotiators representing the Pakistani government and Taleban insurgents are to meet for preliminary peace talks later on Tuesday following a spate of killings, but there is scepticism about their chances of success.
Two teams, nominated by the government and the Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP), are due to gather in Islamabad at 2pm (0900 GMT, 5pm Singapore time) to chart a "roadmap" for talks.
In a surprise move last week Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif named a team to begin dialogue with the militants, who have been waging a violent insurgency since 2007.
Many observers had been anticipating a military offensive against TTP strongholds in Pakistan's tribal areas, following a bloody start to the year.