Will no longer seek Pakistan’s help in peace talks: Afghan president

Ghani says Afghanistan wants Pakistan to honour its commitment and take military action against the Afghan Taliban


Tahir Khan April 25, 2016
Afghanistan's President Ashraf Ghan PHOTO: REUTERS

ISLAMABAD: In a major shift in his policy, Afghan President Ashraf Ghani on Monday said Kabul will no longer seek Pakistan's role in the ongoing peace talks with Taliban.

“Pakistan had promised to aid peace talks but we no longer expect Islamabad to bring Afghan Taliban to the negotiating table,” Ghani said while addressing a joint session of the Afghan parliament. The Afghan president’s rare address to the joint session was aired live on state and private TV channels.

Pakistan hopes to broker Taliban-Kabul talks this month

“We want Pakistan to honour its commitment and take military action against the Afghan Taliban. We want them to handover the Taliban to the Afghan government so we can try them in Sharia courts,” Ghani said.

Describing the Taliban as 'ignorant', the Afghan president said there is no difference between good terrorists and bad terrorists and that Pakistan should act as a responsible government. Ghani also labelled the Islamic State, Haqqani network and certain segments of the Taliban as 'enemies’ of Afghanistan.

Ghani’s comments come as the relationship between the two neighbouring countries deteriorates once again following a deadly attack on Afghan security agency headquarters in Kabul on April 19.

Countries to negotiate for Afghan peace process in mid-January

An Afghan presidential spokesperson accused the Haqqani Network of planning the attack in Pakistan with help from foreign intelligence circles. Afghan Taliban had claimed responsibility for the attack.

Following the Taliban's refusal to join the dialogue, President Ghani has been under pressure to change his policy on peace and reconciliation with the militant group.

Last month, the Taliban refused to sit face-to-face with the government in Kabul under the quadrilateral process of Afghanistan, Pakistan, China and the United States.

Taliban toughen stance on peace talks ahead of quadrilateral meeting

According to reports, China is working with Pakistan and the United States to broker peace talks to end a Taliban insurgency that has raged for 15 years in Afghanistan.

Taliban calls Afghan rulers ‘slaves of US’

Meanwhile, expressing anger at Ghani’s remarks Taliban described Afghan rulers as “slaves” and said they have been “imposed by John Kerry” on the Afghan people.

“The rulers should face the fate like Dr Najeeb,” Taliban spokesperson Zabihullah Mujahid said while referring to public hanging of the Communist leader in 1996.

COMMENTS (38)

Buzzkill | 5 years ago | Reply @Hassan: "u know that ISI is the world’s leading intelligence agency" This is another lie, sold to folks like you by your military establishment. There are at least 10 intelligence agencies rated higher that ISI. If ISI is indeed so powerful than why (as most pakistanis claim) 50,000 Pakistanis have died in terrorist attacks in Pakistan over the last decade? What was ISI doing when a bunch of US navy seals came in & swooped your military's most valuable asset in 2011? The only thing ISI is really good at is spreading propaganda about its superiority among Pakistanis. I recently saw a TV commercial of ISI which is broadcast in Pakistan, on youtube. Pakistan is the only country in the world where an intelligence agency actually advertises itself on a regular basis.
Hassan | 5 years ago | Reply @Sid: Self proclaimed, how disgusting u r, seriously there is a limit of everything, u know that ISI is the world's leading intelligence agency but of course won't admit it here. at least show some courage to accept the reality that India a far bigger and strong country does not have the best of intelligence and Army and it is Pakistan who tops the list of best Intelligence Agencies of the world..
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