Doha Intra-Afghan Dialogue’ participants asked to insist on ending war, ceasefire

By: Lailuma Noori

Joint group of Afghanistan civil society and media organizations by welcoming Germany for hosting the intra-Afghan dialogue meeting in Qatar is asking members of delegation who went to Doha from Kabul to stress on ending the war and ceasefire between the government and Taliban.
Members of the group say effort should be made in the meeting that can help pave the way for direct talks between Afghanistan government and the Taliban group. Meanwhile, the delegation from should share the discussed issues with the people soon after they return to Kabul.
According to a member of the joint group of civil society and media Farida Nikzad, the delegation from Kabul should insist on the country’s national interests, make effort to create good understanding environment in the meeting to make use of the opportunity.
US troop withdrawal from Afghanistan is one of key demands of the Taliban group that wants it to be soon implemented, but recent Peace Consultative Jirga has suggested gradual withdrawal of US troops from Afghanistan. Ceasefire demand is considered as key sign and real will for maintaining peace in the country. It is yet to clear whether Taliban accepts this key demand of the people or not. There are other issues as constitution, human and women rights which should be protected.
Continued war and killing of Afghan innocent civilians are concerning. There has been war in Afghanistan for the past 41 years. The people of the country have experienced nothing except killing, destruction, displacement and poverty during the past period of years.
It is now time to work and pave the way for maintaining ceasefire as innocent civilians are the only victims of ongoing war in the country. Despites of increasing demands for maintaining ceasefire in Afghanistan, clashes between Taliban fighters and Afghan National Defense and Security Forces (ANDSF) have increased recently in various parts of the country.
It is time that Taliban should say yes to unconditional demand of Afghanistan government for direct peace talks and as well as say yes to ceasefire across the country.
The nature and philosophy of this truce have come from human morale, respect to Islamic orders, positive respond to Afghan ulamas and people and proper pavement for direct peace talks between Afghanistan government and the Taliban group. Afghanistan government has repeatedly declared its commitment and determination for maintaining peace in the country.
If the ongoing war is stopped for one hour, it will help and pave the way for a long-term ceasefire in the country.
Demands for maintaining ceasefire have increased after the seven round of direct talks between US delegation led by Zalmay Khalilzad and Taliban negotiators began last week. In the meantime, an intra-Afghan meeting, hosted by Germany, kicked off yesterday in Doha, the capital city of Qatar. The meeting is attended by Taliban negotiators, Afghan civil society activists, right activists, women representatives and prominent political figures from Afghanistan and Europe.

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