Afghans want dignified peace: President Ghani

By: The Kabul Times

KABUL: President Mohammad Ashraf Ghani offered Eid Al-Adha prayers at the Presidential Palace’s mosque on Sunday along with Cabinet and parliament members and greeted the nation, particularly families of martyred security forces, on celebrating the religious festival.
Addressing the nation on advent of Eid, President Ghani insisted that next month’s presidential election was essential so that Afghanistan’s leader would have a powerful mandate to decide the country’s future after years of war.
“Our future cannot be decided outside, whether in the capital cities of our friends, or neighbors. The fate of Afghanistan will be decided here in this homeland,” he said. “We don’t want anyone to intervene in our affairs.”
The president said peace was the desire of each Afghan and peace would come, there shouldn’t be any doubt about it, he said. “
“But we want a peace in which each Afghan has dignity. We don’t want a peace in which Afghans wouldn’t have dignity. We don’t want a peace that would cause people to leave their country. We don’t want brain drain and we don’t want investment drain.”
The Taliban have been refused to negotiate with the Afghan government and on Tuesday they declared the Sept. 28 election a “sham.”
The rebels have warned fellow Afghans to stay away from campaign rallies and the polls, saying such gatherings could be targeted.
Referring to the government’s peace deal with Hezb-e-Islami Afghanistan, President Ghani said, “we showed it that a political settlement is possible.”
About the Sept. 28 election, President Ghani said a weak government could not bring peace and the future government should have a strong mandate of the nation so it could make important decisions.
Without giving details, President Ghani said some politicians urged him to continue in office for some time without holding the presidential election. “But I want this authority from the nation, not politicians.”
He said the entire budget of the next month’s presidential election would be paid by the government and the nation was ready to go for the ballot. “We will go forward not backward.”
President Ghani urged the Afghans to fully participate in the Sept. 28 election. He also talked about the country’s water management and said water was the honor of Afghans and it was being controlled.

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