Won't deal with Taliban separately, says Afghan govt

Published: August 3, 2015
Afghan President Ashraf Ghani. PHOTO: REUTERS

Afghan President Ashraf Ghani. PHOTO: REUTERS

Addressing the recent leadership crisis among the Taliban for the first time, the Afghan government claimed on Monday that it will not deal with the militant group independently from other “armed opposition” in the country. 

The statement from Afghan President Ashraf Ghani’s office said it “will not accept any ‘parallel political structure’ opposed to the Afghan government, a clear reference to the Taliban, who still call themselves the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan.”

The decision comes after the second round of face-to-face talks between Afghan government officials and Taliban representatives, brokered by Pakistan, was postponed following confirmation of Mullah Omar’s death two years ago.

In his first audio message, Mullah Omar’s successor, Mullah Akhtar Mansoor, gave mixed signals on the peace process. While calling peace talks the enemy’s propaganda, Mullah Mansoor did not rule out negotiations along with ‘Jihad’ to achieve the group’s objectives.

Read: Pakistan to coax Afghan Taliban back into talks

Earlier on Sunday, Mullah Abdul Manan, brother of deceased Taliban supremo Mullah Omar, rejected the election of Mullah Mansoor as the new chief of the orthodox militia and refused to pledge allegiance to him.

“We have not pledged allegiance to anyone and will not do so because of differences over the new leader,” Mullah Manan said.”

Read: Mullah Omar’s family rejects new Taliban supremo

Meanwhile, the Taliban knowing that an internal Taliban split may risk the peace talks, have been attempting to present a unified front with several statements.

Following the confirmation of the death of Mullah Omar, a Taliban statement on Monday claimed that they have been flooded by condolences for Mullah Omar and congratulatory remarks for Mullah Mansoor from across Afghanistan. “All these messages and support show the people’s unity and love toward their Islamic Emirate,” it said.

This article originally appeared on the Associated Press.

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Reader Comments (4)

  • Jibran
    Aug 3, 2015 - 4:30PM

    Taliban are never serious about peace. They follow an extremely radical cult that thrives on hatred, bigotry, and bloodshed. This is their binding factor. They can never be trusted.Recommend

  • Ibrar
    Aug 3, 2015 - 6:47PM

    Excluding Taleban from power sharing would never work. A temporary split should not be seen as a weakness and any mishandling could unite them with renewed determination and old inflexible agenda. Attempts must continue to engage them hoping that changing circumstances would create ways to bring the stake holders closer. Continuing fighting on the basis of lack of trust will only perpetuate and nurture mutual hate and negative feelings. It is particularly important for the anti-Ghani activists in the government to recalibrate their policy and be on the same page and support future talks. Current support and facilitation from The U.S., China and Pakistan must be seen as the best opportunity to move forward. Recommend

  • Raj - USA
    Aug 3, 2015 - 8:27PM

    Pakistan and all others involved in the peace talk or pushing Afghanistan to have peace talks with talibans should understand that Afghans are never going to accept talibans and terrorists of any factions to get or share power. They may be forced to do reconcile or share power with talibans temporarily and they may accept it as a temporary solution, only out of compulsion. But, in the end, only the moderate and progressive will prevail and govern. Afghans have seen the destruction that talibans of all factions can bring to their country.Recommend

  • Virkaul
    Aug 5, 2015 - 9:53AM

    Why not TTP be made to share power in Pakistan. After all they too share the same ideology?Recommend

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