Tamanna Salikuddin is director of South Asia programs at the U.S. Institute of Peace, where she oversees USIP’s work in Pakistan and broader South Asia. She comes into this role with extensive regional expertise in Pakistan, Afghanistan, India, and Sri Lanka, particularly in political and demographic trends in the region.

Salikuddin's primary focus has been examining conflicts and conflict resolution across South and Central Asia and the Middle East, particularly those involving non-state actors and militant groups. She joined USIP in 2018 as a senior expert on peace processes where she led a program to build thought leadership and expertise on sustainable and inclusive peace processes.

Salikuddin joined USIP after 12 years in the U.S. government focused on South Asia and conflict resolution. From 2014 to 2017, she was a senior advisor to the special representative for Afghanistan & Pakistan at the U.S. Department of State. During this time, Salikuddin led a team of experts pursuing a peace process between the Afghan Taliban and Government of Afghanistan. She represented the United States at the historic Murree talks in 2015 and participated in other high-level negotiations. From 2011 to 2013, she served as Director for Afghanistan and Pakistan at the National Security Council focusing on U.S.-Pakistan relations and the Afghanistan peace process. She has served as a political officer at the U.S. embassy in Islamabad and an analyst on South Asia.

Prior to joining the U.S. government, Salikuddin worked as an attorney on international law issues in South Asia.

Publications By Tamanna

The Latest: Three Things to Know About Conflict Flashpoints in Southern Asia

The Latest: Three Things to Know About Conflict Flashpoints in Southern Asia

Thursday, January 26, 2023

By: Tamanna Salikuddin

As the United States deepens its partnership with India and focuses on the Indo-Pacific strategy, New Delhi’s troubled relationships with both Pakistan and China continue to threaten strategic stability in Southern Asia. Last year, a USIP senior study group released a report examining potential trigger events that could lead to escalation in the region, offering recommendations on how to enhance strategic stability. USIP’s Tamanna Salikuddin provides an update on the state of strategic stability in the region, discusses what upcoming events we should be watching and looks at how India-Chinese tensions have impacted Southern Asia.

Type: Blog

Conflict Analysis & Prevention

Five Key Issues Facing Pakistan’s New Army Chief

Five Key Issues Facing Pakistan’s New Army Chief

Wednesday, November 30, 2022

By: Asfandyar Mir, Ph.D.;  Tamanna Salikuddin

Pakistan just underwent a major military transition. Last week, Prime Minister Shahbaz Sharif appointed General Asim Munir as the new chief of the country’s powerful army, succeeding Qamar Bajwa who held the position for six years. Munir is a former chief of Pakistan’s powerful intelligence service, the Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI), and before that the head of the country’s military intelligence. In nuclear-armed Pakistan with the world’s fifth largest military and a history of military rule, the army chief tends to be the most powerful leader — at times even perceived as the de facto leader due to significant influence over Pakistan’s domestic and foreign policies.

Type: Analysis and Commentary

Civilian-Military RelationsDemocracy & GovernanceGlobal Policy

Tamanna Salikuddin on Pakistan’s New Military Chief

Tamanna Salikuddin on Pakistan’s New Military Chief

Tuesday, November 29, 2022

By: Tamanna Salikuddin

General Asim Munir was appointed as the new head of Pakistan’s military this week — a position often viewed as the de facto leader of the country. Amid a fraught political environment, Munir’s “first job is going to be figuring out what the civil-military balance is in Pakistan,” says USIP’s Tamanna Salikuddin.

Type: Podcast

Pakistan’s Deadly Floods Come Amid Deluge of Crises

Pakistan’s Deadly Floods Come Amid Deluge of Crises

Thursday, September 1, 2022

By: Tamanna Salikuddin;  Jumaina Siddiqui

After experiencing its hottest months in 61 years in April and May, Pakistan has been hit by a “monsoon season on steroids,” according to U.N. chief Antonio Guterres. Pakistan has long been considered one of the most vulnerable countries to climate change in the world. Despite a history of intense floods, the country was ill-prepared for this year’s monsoon season. Intractable political and economic crises have hampered Pakistan’s capacity to address the ongoing fallout, particularly the worsening humanitarian crisis.

Type: Analysis and Commentary

EconomicsEnvironment

Pakistan’s New Government Struggles to Consolidate Control

Pakistan’s New Government Struggles to Consolidate Control

Tuesday, August 9, 2022

By: Cyril Almeida;  Colin Cookman;  Adnan Rafiq;  Tamanna Salikuddin;  Jumaina Siddiqui

Pakistan’s current government, an unwieldy multi-party coalition led by Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif of the Pakistan Muslim League Nawaz (PML-N) party, faced a new setback in July after losses in mid-month special elections for 20 constituencies in the country’s heartland province of Punjab. Although the PML-N coalition attempted to retain control of the provincial government through manuevers in the provincial assembly, a Supreme Court ruling on July 26 overturned earlier precedent and ordered the election of Chaudhry Pervaiz Elahi, an ally of former Prime Minister Imran Khan, to the position of chief minister.

Type: Analysis and Commentary

Democracy & GovernanceEconomics

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