Editor in Chief: Moh. Reza Huwaida Wednesday, August 23rd, 2017

Ghani Asks Taliban to Follow in HIA’s Footsteps

Ghani Asks Taliban to  Follow in HIA’s Footsteps

KABUL - President Ashraf Ghani on Thursday welcomed Hezb-i-Islami Afghanistan (HIA) leader, Gulbuddin Hekmatyar, upon arriving in capital Kabul and asked the Taliban to follow into Hekmatyar’s footsteps.
The president, who addressed a ceremony organized for welcoming Hekmatyar to Kabul in the Presidential Palace, said Hekmatyar arrived in Kabul at a time when the Afghans were mourning the bloody attack on the Afghan military in northern Balkh province.
“We promised to the great nation of Afghanistan that we would pave the ground for peace, we took a great step today,” he added.
Ghani said the Afghans were certain that violence and hostility could not help realize goals of national interest.
The Afghan government and the HIA showed they strongly believed in peace. Ghani said. “Our conversation should bring trust, not opposition. On the other hand, reaching power through elections is one of the important basics of the current political life,” he added, while stressing more productive negotiations.
The president said the new generation of Afghanistan expected their political leaders would lay down the foundation of stable peace in the country.
“We support peace in the framework of Islamic, national and humanitarian values, an issue that has a clear mention in the Constitution,” Ghani said.
The president said: “We are ready for peace and pay the cost in achieving this goal based on the ability of this nation.”
“I ask the Taliban, do you have the capacity of negotiation with the people and government of Afghanistan. We seriously ask you, who and where your leader is? What is your program for this nation except killing, fighting and destructions? I request you to follow Hekmatyar’s way and join the peace process,” he added.
Ghani thanked Gulbuddin Hekmatyar, the High Peace Council (HPC), jihadi leaders, Islamic scholars, civil society institutes and media for supporting the intra-Afghan negotiations.
Afghans sacrificed their lives for long years to break down cruelty and despotism, and now the Afghan forces stood against those cruelties and international terrorism” said the president.
He said the ongoing war in Afghanistan was not an internal war and the Afghans were victim of international terrorism.
Former president Hamid Karzai, who also attended the ceremony, also urged the Taliban to shun insurgency and join the peace process.
He said the Taliban should not create a cruel environment by fighting and violence under pretext of expelling foreign forces from Afghanistan.
Veteran former jihadi leader Abdul Rab Rassoul Sayyaf also welcomed the return of Hekmatyar and said the past should be forgotten and a new door of friendship should be opened.
He asked the government to win trust of the nation in supporting the Afghan forces and stability in the country.

Mohammad Younus Qanuni and Karim Khalili, former vice-presidents, also welcomed the return of Hekmatyar and stressed on peace in the country and international community’s support in this regard. (Pajhwok)