Rabbani renews dialogue offer to all insurgent factions
KABUL (Pajhwok): The Ashraf Ghani administration on Tuesday renewed its call for all warring parties to renounce violence and join the reconciliation process.
Foreign Minister Salahuddin Rabbani issued the call in his opening remarks at the fourth meeting of the Quadrilateral Coordination Group (QCG) in Kabul.
The government was ready for talks with all rebel groups, the minister said, warning of strong against those who spurned the offer. "Security forces will move against those who reject peace."
He said: “We will continue to pursue all possible avenues to ensure this rightful demand of our people for dignified peace that strengthens our constitutional system,”
While praising goodwill and support from neighbours and allies, the former High Peace Council chairman said the Afghan government would continue to attach particular importance to the work of the QCG.
Rabbani claimed the group had made tangible progress in adopting terms for its work, a roadmap document and consensus to ensure direct talks between representatives of the government and Taliban.
The government’s priority to a political process derived its legitimacy and support from the overwhelming consensus inside and outside the government on a results-oriented reconciliation process, he continued.
New HPC Chairman Pir Syed Ahmad Gilani and his deputies would bolster efforts to consolidate the national consensus on peace with Taliban groups through a political process, he hoped.
Rabbani expected the QCG meeting would reach agreement on early initiatives by Afghan and Pakistani religious scholars in support of reconciliation in Afghanistan and against violence and terrorism.
Rabbani said the entire nation desired peace with dignity, but the elements refusing to quit the insurgency would be dealt with sternly in accordance with the law.
The constitution did not stop anyone from jumping on the reconciliation bandwagon, he explained. "We are working together to achieve peace. Those who choose to join the process are welcome.”
Three of the four-nation meetings, involving representatives from Afghanistan, Pakistan, China and the United States, have already taken place in Kabul and Islamabad.
At the last meeting on February 6, the participants had agreed on a roadmap for the resumptionof peace talks that were suspended after the announcement of Mullah Omar’s death.
Javed Faisal, deputy spokesman for Chief Executive Officer Dr. Abdullah, said the date and venue for direct talks would be decided by the meeting. The government remains serious about talks with all rebel groups, including Taliban, HIA and the Haqqani Network.
PresidentGhani’s deputy spokesman Syed Zafar Hashemi said the meeting would decide on which groups to talk to and when." Reforms in the High Peace Council would hasten the reconciliation effort, he believed.
Set up in December 2015 on the sidelines of the Heart of Asia Conference in Islamabad, the four-nation group has already developed a roadmap for peace negotiations.