“Peace Jirga declaration is a roadmap and action place for govt,” President Ghani

KABUL: President Mohammad Ashraf Ghani addressed the closing ceremony of the Grand Consultative Jirga on Peace on Friday where 3200 delegates attended the national event from across the country.
The Consultative Loya Jirga delegates issued a 23-point declaration, asking government and Taliban to announce ceasefire during the month of Ramadan, opening of political office for Taliban in the country and exchange of the prisoners. Addressing the event and thanking security personnel’s efforts for security of the jirga, President Ghani said the Afghan government is ready to implement all recommendations mentioned in the Peace Jirga’s declaration. He said the Afghan government is ready to announce a ceasefire if the Taliban show readiness in this regard. President Ghani aid the Afghan government is ready to implement all recommendations mentioned in the Peace Jirga’s resolution.
He said the Afghan government is ready to announce a ceasefire if the Taliban show readiness in this regard.  
“I am ready to implement your legitimate demand which is ceasefire. I see the courage and power in the National Defense and Security Forces lines to implement the discipline of a ceasefire. If the Taliban is ready for a ceasefire in a way, we can work on technical details of it,” the president told the delegates attended Peace Loya Jirga in Kabul.
President Ghani said he apologizes to Kabul residents for the problems created for them during the Peace Jirga, including road closures in the city.
He added that the Peace Jirga declaration will be the action plan and the roadmap for the Afghan government and that all recommendations of the declaration will be implemented.
“We are ready to provide the ground for Taliban to be part of the country’s development. It is a friendly suggestion,” President Ghani said.
Meanwhile, the president announced the release of 175 Taliban prisoners as a gesture of goodwill towards peace.  He called on the Taliban to send their delegation to Kabul or another province of the country to receive the 175 prisoners.
President Ghani said that a post-Afghanistan peace will help economic development in Pakistan. He said the Afghan government wants a relationship with Pakistan which is based on mutual respect and friendship, which is clear and is an equal government-to-government relation.
President Ghani said he appreciates US efforts for Afghan peace and added that Afghanistan has strategic relations with the United States.
He thanked all countries including Uzbekistan, Turkmenistan, Indonesia, and the European Union which are interested in hosting the Afghan peace talks. The president said the Taliban has to make their choice that whether they will attend the talks inside Afghanistan or in any of the mentioned countries. 
President Ghani also called on the Taliban to get ready for peace talks inside Afghanistan.
Meanwhile, Abdul Rab Rasul Sayyaf, head of the Peace Jirga, said the grand council serves for the interests of Afghans, which is a durable peace in the country. He called on the Afghan people and the Taliban to remove hatred from their hearts against each other as he addresses the closing ceremony of the Peace Jirga.
He said also called on President Ghani to consult the Afghan people in any decision on peace. 
Sayyaf said Peace Jirga delegates expressed their recommendations in a free environment. He said Afghans have a strong will for peace.
According to him, a majority of delegates are in favor of integrated peace efforts.
The Kabul Times

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