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Karzai calls for Loya Jirga, asks Taliban to shun war

Karzai calls for Loya Jirga, asks Taliban to shun war

Oct 12, 2017 - 14:42

KABULinfo-icon (Pajhwok): Former president Hamid Karzai on Thursday asked the Talibaninfo-icon to join the reconciliation process, saying innocent people were being killed and their homes ruined as a result of war.

He had dispatched a letter to the Taliban asking them to join peace talks, the ex-president told a media briefing in Kabul.  He also highlighted Pakistaninfo-icon's role in ending the ongoing conflict.

Three years after leaving the Presidential Palace, Karzai stressed the need for immediately convening the constitutional Loya Jirgainfo-icon to deal with the crisis being faced by the country.

"The new US strategy doesn't carry any message of peace as Pakistan's role in the peace process is critical and without this, peace will be impossible both in Afghanistaninfo-icon and Pakistan," he remarked.

While undercoring its role, he hastened to accuse Pakistan of not being honest in dealing with Afghanistan. "At times, it comes across as an ally of the US and at other times an ally of Afghanistan."

A Loya Jirgainfo-icon should be called into session as soon as possible to suggest ways of resolving the crisis the country, he said, adding ,  all politicians, tribal elders and civil societyinfo-icon activists be part of the forum.

The United States and Russia were engaged in rivalries during the jihadinfo-icon against the Soviet forces, recalled Karzai, who claimed the competing influences were still there -- to the detriment the Afghan people.

Karzai suggested: “India should not ally itself with America’s objectives in Afghanistan because the objectives are not good for this region. They are surely not going to be good for India.”

Urging Delhi not to be influenced by Trump’s policy, he said: “My advice to India is that it should have an independent policy towards Afghanistan. India should not ally itself with America’s objectives...”

The ex-president, rejecting talk of an India-Pakistan proxy war, said Delhi never interfered with Kabul's relationship with Islamabad during his presidency.

Earlier, Karzai, in an exclusive tête-à-tête with Times Now, slammed Pakistan for its unabated terror activities in the country, urging India to take a leading role in the region.

During the course of the interview, Karzai affirmed that Pakistan has direct links with terrorist organisations, apart from questioning the US over its failure to maintain peace in the country for the past 16 years. He also alleged US and Pakistan of being allies in the war on extremism in the region.

“So if the US knew all along what was going on, the shift in US policy (on Afghanistan) is not to fight extremism but to bring pressure on Pakistan for other reasons. “We have no ill will towards Pakistan, we want them to do well and consider them a neighbour,” he added.

The former president also said: “We want India to help Afghanistan’s military backup, we want India to train our people…want India to gives us equipment. “That’s where I suspect not is the case,” he added.

He said that Afghanistan had approached India earlier during the UPA regime with a proposal, but India failed to act then due to two reasons: Pakistan-based extremism and “the US was against it”.

Karzai also welcomed the surgical strikes by Indian Army on terrorist camps in Pakistan-occupied-Kashmir and said for long his country has been demanding terror sanctuaries be destroyed.

"We have been saying and wishing it since so long that terror sanctuaries be eliminated, and the Indian Army has done the right thing through its surgical strike," he said.





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