Editor in Chief: Moh. Reza Huwaida Thursday, October 18th, 2018

Regional Unity Can Support Peace in Afghanistan

The conference on peace in Afghanistan that was held in Tashkent on Tuesday, March 27, made some serious promises to support peace process with Taliban that should be led and owned by Afghanistan. At the end of the conference, representatives of about 23 countries, including all central Asian countries, Russia, China, India, Pakistan, Iran, the United States and European Union with Uzbekistan and Afghanistan, adopted a declaration that promised regional cooperation on fighting terrorism, eradicating drug production and smuggling and ensuring all security assistance to Afghanistan be provided through the Afghan government only.All the participating nations pledged to support Afghanistan’s peace process and agreed that a political settlement, led by Afghanistan, but supported by close regional counter-terrorism and counter-narcotics cooperation were key to peace and prosperity in Afghanistan. At the same time, the representatives also concurred to value sovereignty and territorial integrity of Afghanistan and the efforts of its people and government for establishing peace and development in the country.
It is really threatening to see amassing of terrorism within Afghanistan with each passing day. It is the time in Afghanistan when the scenario should be going through improvements and efforts should be made to stabilize the situation. The coming few years are really very important and will decide the future of the country. The real transition is going on; there are great changes expected and if Afghanistan’s socio-political scenario is not grounded on stable footings, expectation for a peaceful and prosperous Afghanistan would be just a wool-gathering. There has been increase in the last few months in the different forms of insurgency; and people from different factions have been targeted. The number of attacks on both the Afghan forces and civilian have been alarming; and there are different indications in the form of conservative and violating practices throughout the country that show that Talibanization is on the rise and will keep on rising unless somber efforts are made to control the drift. At the same time, the rise and growth of Daesh in different parts of the country is another threat. The support of the regional countries stands paramount in this regard.
The declaration that was agreed proclaimed that the involved countries would support Central Asian states’ efforts to advance the peace process and socio-economic development in Afghanistan, and agreed to call on the Taliban “to recognize their share of responsibility for bringing peace and security to Afghanistan,” in a mutually agreed format. It also noted that a political settlement between government and the Taliban would be a “victory for all parties and a defeat for none.”
At the same time, it highlighted that this move should guarantee the inclusion of the Taliban in the political process “as a legitimate political actor.” And went on to state however that in turn, the Taliban needs to denounce all violence and cut ties with international terrorist groups including al-Qaeda, Daesh and other transnational terrorist organizations. In addition, the rights of women were noted and the need for full and meaningful participation by women in all aspects of Afghanistan’s society, including the peace process, was stressed.
It is of utmost importance that the countries that have made promises must pursue them with honesty and determination. Because with the deterioration of peace and tranquility in Afghanistan there are dangers that terrorism may continue and it will ultimately influence all the regional countries. More importantly, the terrorism has to be rooted out because of the fact that it has been influencing the lives of the common people of Afghanistan to a great extent. Innocent civilians have paid a very heavy price for the prevailing conditions. They are basically the ones who have been suffering and may suffer to a further extent if instability and terrorism prevail in the country. It is really pathetic to see the civilians losing their lives when they have nothing to do with the war. As wars and clashes for decades have torn certain parts of the country and incapacitated the infra-structure in Afghanistan, people have not only suffered the hardships of the poor and miserable lives but also the horrors of war.
One of the reasons of the consistent wave of terrorism is the rise of Daesh along with Taliban in the recent few years. And the peace process, instead of pointing towards improvement, seems to be going the other way. In fact, the overall peace process does not seem to be working well. The process should havebeencomprehensive enough to include within its folds the overall political and economic stability and better life opportunities for all the Afghan people.
Nevertheless, there should be efforts both from the regional countries and the international community as per their promises to change the circumstance in Afghanistan in true sense. Eradication of terrorism stands as the top priority matter and the real peace process should make the country move towards a terrorism free country, and make efforts for better governance, justice and rule of law.