Shun war, embrace peace: Karzai to Taliban
In a message on the occasion, the president said his long-suffering and deeply religious nation continued to be haunted by an "unholy war", depriving children of education and damaging the country's infrastructure.
A statement from the Presidential Palace said Karzai voiced his profound shock at the continued killing of religious scholars and tribal elders in a war that impeded Afghanistan's development and destroyed even mosques.
"Unfortunately, all these un-Islamic acts are being perpetrated in the name of religion by elements who, in fact, want to weaken and defame Islam," the president remarked.
He said: "With the advent of this holy month, I once again call on the Taliban, particularly those who call themselves sons of soil, to begin a journey of peace and compassion. I want them to halt fighting and stop being a source of torment for the nation."
Karzai asked the fighters to return home, live peacefully in their motherland and free themselves from the outsiders who used the religion to trouble Muslims and thereby supported sinister conspiracies of the enemy.
"After the opening of their office in Qatar, the pro-Afghanistan Taliban should understand that neither dignity nor their flag is safe in foreign countries. The foreigners use them only as a tool," he maintained.
On Friday, the Taliban vowed to continue tactical attacks during Ramadan. The group spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid said a message attributed to him promising a temporary cessation of violence during the fasting month was part of the cyber war between intelligence operatives and the fighters.
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