Afghan Peace Council outlines plan for talks with Taliban

18:13, October 21, 2010      

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The spokesman of newly formed Afghan High Council for Peace Qiyamuddin Kashaf on Thursday said that the body had made its plan to begin talks with the Taliban militants.

"The High Council for Peace, is calling upon government and unhappy brothers (Taliban) to pave the way for negotiations and support the peace process," he told reporters in his first press conference here.

He said the peace council is calling on armed opponents to denounce the violence and joint the peace process to ensure lasting peace in the war-torn country.

"We would listen to all of their legitimate demands and preconditions," he stated.

He also called on international community and NATO-led troops based in Afghanistan to stand on their promises and support the peace process initiated by Afghan government.

"We want the international community and international forces to do as they promised to Afghans for brining lasting peace to this country," he emphasized.

According to Kashaf the peace council has also called on the neighboring countries, United Nations and King of Saudi Arabia to help Afghans in this process.

He also confirmed that there has been some unofficial personal contacts with the Taliban militants, but did not give more details.

The 70-member High Council for Peace, is consisted of former Jihadi leaders including two ex-presidents - Burhanudin Rabbani and Sibghatullah Mujadadi, former Taliban commanders, parliamentarians, government officials and some women.

However, analysts familiar with the Taliban insurgents' leaders are on the view that contacts with the Taliban are nothing new and would fail to achieve the goal set for as the Taliban insurgents like the past once again rejected the offer for talks on the begining day of formation of the peace council, saying there will be no talks in the presence of foreign troops in Afghanistan.

Source: Xinhua


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