Political Parties Warn Karzai against Deals with Taliban
Kabul – Afghanistan’s political parties fear that President Hamid Karzai may negotiate away some of the gains made against the Taliban in an attempt to secure a peace deal with the insurgent group. Ahead of Karzai’s visit to Qatar this week where he is expected to discuss peace options with the Taliban and the opening of the group’s political office, government opposition groups in Afghanistan have called on him to be transparent about any promises made.
“Afghanistan’s government gave privileges to the Taliban that mean the government cannot do anything, and now the government is trying in a last bid effort to put pressure on the Taliban to negotiate; but I think it has a weak position against the Taliban,” National Coalition party member Eng Asim said. The politicians said Karzai owes it to the Afghan people to be open about any verbal agreements he makes or is planning to make with the group.
“The president should inform the people what deals will happen there. The peace process is the issue of the Afghan people, so the people should know about it,” deputy leader of the Right and Justice Party Moeen Marastyal said. Although the aim of the talks are widely seen as the way to end the Taliban’s use of violence to achieve its goals, some politicians view the talks as giving the insurgents more legitimacy than they deserve.
“The outcome of the trip will be to recognise a terrorist group as a political group. I think it goes against [Afghanistan’s] constitution and the values of the last decade and the people’s wishes ,” National Front spokesman Sardar Rahimi said. Karzai announced on Sunday that he will head to Qatar this week for the talks with the Taliban, although who he is meeting and for how long he will be there remains unclear. The Taliban has repeatedly refused to negotiate with the Karzai government, declaring it a puppet regime of the Western powers. (Tolonews)