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HPC to Hold Global Conference on Peace Process

salahuddin rabbani

Kabul- Mawlawi Shafiullah, a member of the High Peace Council (HPC), said on Thursday that the HPC is planning to hold an international conference in Kabul to discuss the Afghan peace process, though he declined to comment on when exactly it would be.

“An international conference on the Afghan peace process is expected to be held in Kabul. The conference will discuss the peace process and seek support from the international community to accelerate it,” said Mr. Shafiullah.

Mr. Shafiullah’s announcement of the conference plan comes just before President Karzai is scheduled to leave for Pakistan to smooth over relations with Islamabad and find a way to jumpstart the peace process that floundered nearly two months ago when the opening of the Taliban’s political office in Qatar sparked unexpected controversy in Washington and Kabul.

Moeen Marastyal, the deputy head of the Right and Justice Party (RJP), said that so far the efforts of the Afghan government and HPC have been completely ineffective. He urged them to rework their strategy in getting the Taliban to the negotiation table. “The Afghan government is hoping to accelerate the peace process by making use of some formulae. I believe that peace cannot be achieved in this manner,” said Mr. Marastyal.

President Karzai is scheduled to visit Islamabad by the end of August. However, Abdul Hameed Mubarez, a member of the HPC, recently reminded that no Presidential trips to Pakistan has yet yielded any positive results. “President Karzai has visited Pakistan 19 times and these trips helped in no way to restore peace and security in the country,” said Mr. Mubarez. The upcoming trip of President Karzai is his first one since the new government was elected in Islamabad.

But given the comments of Mr. Mubarez, is does not seem the HPC is very hopeful for what will come of the trip with regards to the peace process. With the news of the negotiating body’s plans to hold an international conference to discuss peace talks in Kabul, it would seem its members are more optimistic about what may come from discussing strategies with experts than trying to gain ground in Islamabad. (ToloNews)

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