Afghan Taliban link reconciliation with complete withdrawal of foreign troops

Informal talks, hosted by Qatar's foreign ministry, come as fighting escalate after withdrawal of most troops

Tahir Khan May 04, 2015
Informal talks, hosted by Qatar's foreign ministry, come as fighting escalate after withdrawal of most troops. PHOTO: AFP

ISLAMABAD: Taliban representatives met with Afghan political figures for a second day in Qatar on Sunday, after which Afghan Taliban have linked joining the intra-Afghan dialogue to the withdrawal of all foreign troops. 

Hours after President Ashraf Ghani assumed government last September, his government signed security pacts enabling the US and Nato allies to keep almost 1,200 troops in Afghanistan.

Ghani’s predecessor Hamid Karzai had rejected the signing of the Bilateral Security Pact on the plea that the US had failed to bring the Taliban to the negotiation table.

In a veiled reference to the security pacts with the US and Nato, the Taliban said "un-Islamic and illegal agreements” cannot solve the Afghan problem.

The closed doors two-day 'talks' concluded in Qatar on Sunday where the Taliban delegation read out their statement in Pashto.

Read: Pakistan supports 'talks' between Afghan govt, Taliban in Qatar

An eight-member Taliban delegation was led by former Taliban minister Sher Abbas Stenakzai while the 20-member Afghan delegation which included members of the government and Afghan peace council was led by Ghani's uncle, Abdul Qayyum Kochi - who was previously involved in informal conversations with the Taliban.

"Withdrawal of foreign troops will provide opportunity to Afghans to agree on an inclusive set up and Islamic system," the Taliban said.

"End to the invasion could pave the way to peace and reconciliation among Afghans. Regional countries also have issues with the presence of foreign troops in Afghanistan," said the Taliban statement posted on their official website.

Further it was added that "The Americans and their allies should respect the aspirations of the people of Afghanistan and end their approach of the use of force."

The statement said that Afghanistan would not have an independent government in the presence of foreign forces.

The Taliban also dispelled the impression of exporting their ideology to other countries and said "Afghans have not been involved in terrorism against any country or the people but others have attacked their homeland."

They justified their war and described resistance as an “Islamic and national uprising” as they had fought 50 nations who had latest weapons and technology.

Terming the UN sanctions on their leaders as "cruel", the Taliban said such sanctions and decision were "hurdles in the way of the peace process."


fakhir | 6 years ago | Reply @atta Mohammad. If Pakistan disengage from Afghanistan, there will be no talks. These talks are being facilitated by Pakistan.
Atta Mohammed | 6 years ago | Reply foreigners should withdrawal forcess from Afghanistan and we strongly condemned the interrupted of pak in tri dialogue bkz Taliban and pak don't want progressed Afghanistan
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