Editor in Chief: Moh. Reza Huwaida Saturday, July 20th, 2019

Why Interim Government is not in the Interest of Afghanistan

Interim government and caretaker government are the options that some Afghan political figures and presidential candidates including Hanif Atmar have proposed to replace the National Unity Government when its tenure ends The NUG’s tenure will end in May 2019. Imran Khan, the Prime Minister of Pakistan, in late March, suggested that forming an interim Afghan government would smooth peace talks between U.S. and Taliban officials. These statements received mixed responses from the Afghan government and Afghan citizens. While Afghan government and the majority of the people rejected this idea, some politicians and presidential candidates embraced it warmly.
Why Interim Government is not in the Interests of Afghanistan
Legally the interim government is a vague political terminology in the country. It has not been considered in the Afghan Constitution.
The reasons why the majority of Afghan people and the NUG reject the interim government include there is no possibility for the creation of an interim administration, as it does not support the interests of the country. As the Afghan Constitution has been identified as one of the redlines of the peace talks by the National Reconciliation Leadership Council, such a set up may lead to change the type of the political system of the country from the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan to Islamic Emirate or any other form of totalitarian system that is against the National interests of Afghanistan. Thus, the Afghan government has repeatedly called on the Taliban that they can only join the peace talks under the umbrella of the Afghan government. According to Dr. Abdullah, if the NUG talked about an interim government, then it would not have been an interim government in which Dr. Simar Samar served as deputy and he had served as foreign minister. He said he did not think that this time, the arrangements would be like that, and Afghan politicians could realize this fact and it would not happen. If it happened, it would not be in the interests of Afghanistan.
Further, considering the root causes of the conflicts in Afghanistan, it is nearly impossible that Afghan leaders reach a consensus on the type of political system, tenure of the interim government and conducting fair and free elections under an interim government. In addition to that, political analysts hold that for establishing an interim government, there must be a symbolic figure who is widely respected by rival factions and most of the population — someone who can help to facilitate contacts and communication. Considering the current context of Afghanistan, it is nearly impossible and seems very challenging to find such a figure in Afghanistan.
Peace talks are a time-consuming process. The international community and Afghan government must give it a good deal of time in order to reach a consensus on different issues of the peace talks. As a result, all parties shall peruse a political settlement cautiously arranged and with patience. Such an approach would lead to a peace deal that preserves the current constitution, can further legitimize the current state, ensures the post-2001 democratization process, include all the involved parties and contribute to state building and the stabilization of Afghanistan. Ultimately, this is the only mechanism that can ensure a durable peace that can prevent Afghanistan form producing further grievances that may potentially intensify the war in the country.