'Coordination council' to oversee peaceful transfer of power in Afghanistan: Karzai

Council calls on govt forces and Taliban fighters to curb chaos while maintaining restraint, says former president

News Desk August 15, 2021
Former Afghan President Hamid Karzai. PHOTO: AA

Former Afghanistan president Hamid Karzai on Sunday announced that a 'coordination council' was formed "in order to prevent chaos, reduce sufferings of the people and oversee a peaceful transition of power."

"In order to prevent chaos and reduce the suffering of the people, and to better manage the affairs related to peace and peaceful transfer of power, a coordination council was formed by Chairman of the Supreme Council National Reconciliation Abdullah Abdullah, leader of Hezb-e-Islami, Gulbuddin Hekmatyar and himself," he wrote in a tweet.

Karzai said that the council called on the government security forces and the Taliban fighters to resolutely curb the chaos while maintaining restraint.

Read more: President Ghani flies out as Taliban march into Kabul

Karzai also appeared in a video along with his three daughters in Kabul, where he urged residents to remain patient after the Taliban take control of the heart of Afghanistan.

However, two Taliban officials told Reuters that there would be no transitional government in Afghanistan and that the group expects a complete handover of power.

The development came after President Ashraf Ghani left the country amid growing pressure from the Taliban who returned to the Afghan capital earlier in the day after a US-led military invasion ousted them 20 years ago.

A senior Afghan Interior Ministry official confirmed the development to Reuters. Asked for comment, the president's office said it "cannot say anything about Ashraf Ghani's movement for security reasons".

Acting defence minister Bismillah Mohammadi, earlier in the day, said that the president had handed the authority of solving the crisis in the country to political leaders. Mohammadi, according to ToloNews said that a delegation will travel to Doha on Monday for talks on the country’s situation.

Also read: High-level delegation arrives in Islamabad

Meanwhile, sources close to the Taliban said that it has been agreed that Ghani will resign after a political agreement and hand the power to a transitional government.

Gulbuddin Hekmatyar also slammed the government for not refusing to "give up" the war with the Taliban.

According to ToloNews, he said that the government has refused the transfer of power to a government acceptable to all, adding that it has failed to secure Kabul.

He said that the Taliban had decided not to enter Kabul, but warned that "now some may take advantage of the situation."

Hekmatyar said that the people can ensure their security on their own.

President Ghani's government was left completely isolated on Sunday after the Taliban claimed the anti-Taliban northern stronghold of Mazar-i-Sharif and the eastern city of Jalalabad.

Like with most of the other captured cities, the seizure of power came after government forces surrendered or retreated.

It left the Taliban holding all the cards in any negotiated surrender of the capital.

On Saturday, Ghani sought to project authority with a national address in which he spoke of "re-mobilising" the military while seeking a "political solution" to the crisis.


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