Now govt, HIA responsible to work together for stability: Ghani
KABUL (Pajhwok): President Ashraf Ghani on Thursday said it was now a joint responsibility of his government and the Hezb-i-Islami Afghanistan (HIA) to stop fighting and work for betterment of the country and steer Afghanistan out of dependence on foreigners.
The president was speaking after signing a peace agreement with the HIA, led by Gulbadin Hekmatyar, who also affixed his signature to the document in a gathering at the Presidential Palace. Former jihadi leaders, High Peace Council (HPC) members, parliamentarians and top government officials were present on the occasion.
“Now it is our joint responsibility to work for peace and stability, end Afghanistan’s dependence on others and make it an independent country. Bringing the conflict to an end is more responsibility of the elders,” the president said.
Peace was the prime demand of all Afghans and it was a historic day today, Ghani said of the deal’s signing event. Had it not been the demand of the people, reaching the milestone would not have been possible, according to Ghani, who called as vital the international community’s support in this regard.
“We don’t want war. The mission of our security forces is to defend the people of Afghanistan from war which has been imposed on us, therefore we are proud of our security forces and consider them vital part of our system.”
The president said it was high time for Taliban and other groups to decide if they wanted to stand alongside their nation by joining the peace process like the HIA or choose to continue fighting and promoting insurgency.
Ghani said: “We demonstrated with our actions that we are committed to and have the ability to establish peace, a process which has never been easy. Both the sides showed there are committed to peace and as a result the agreement was struck.”
He asked political leaders of the country and the international community to help bring other fighting groups to the negotiating table.
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