The Kabul Times.
Politics

China to host intra-Afghan peace meeting

By: Suraya Raiszada

As efforts for Afghanistan peace is underway in national and international level, Chinese officials want to host an intra-Afghan peace meeting in Beijing. Officials of Afghanistan government say the government has been invited to participate in the meeting.
“Chinese officials have contacted us in recent days that Beijing would like to host an intra-Afghan meeting for Afghanistan peace rather than resumption of the peace talks,” said Kabir Haqmal, a spokesperson to Afghanistan National Security Council.
He stressed that the government of Afghanistan was asking all countries interested in helping in Afghan peace process to keep committed to the principle of Afghan-led and Afghan-owned peace process.
According to Afghanistan National Security Council (ANSC), the government of Afghanistan seriously wants the peace process to be led and owned by Afghanistan government and wants the ongoing disputes to be resolved between Afghans. Previously, Chinese officials had said that no preparations and peace agreements would be executed without presence and engagement of Afghanistan government.
Afghan officials says the government is supporting and welcoming any opportunity or initiatives taken for maintaining peace in the country and currently there is regional consensus in this regard.
The spokesperson for NSC stressed that world and regional countries were hoped to support Afghanistan peace efforts so that Afghans reach lasting and permanent peace in the country. Meanwhile, a number of Afghan political experts believe that it is necessary for Afghanistan to have support of regional countries in ongoing peace process.
“Ongoing efforts by world and regional countries in connection with Afghanistan peace process are necessary and can be a good step towards maintaining peace in the country,” said, Jamal Farahmand, an Afghan political expert.
He added that China was among countries that could play vital and constructive role in Afghanistan peace process, stressing that holding the intra-Afghan meeting in Beijing with participation of representatives of the Taliban group and Afghanistan government could be a good opportunity and could encourage all regional countries to help Afghanistan in reaching peace and stability.
Members of parliament also believe that China is one of the powerful and rich countries in the region that can convince regional countries to support the Afghan-led and Afghan-owned peace process as the country has good relations with all regional countries.
After cancellation of peace talks between US and Taliban, US Secretary of State in his recent remarks informed of efforts for resumption of peace talks between US delegates led by Zalmay Khalilzad and representatives of the Taliban group. Meanwhile, US special peace envoy for Afghanistan has Zalmay Khalilzad resumed his visits to EU member countries to discuss resumption of peace talks with the Taliban group. During his new visits to Europe, Zalmay Khalilzad has met EU envoy, NATO and UN officials.
It is worth mentioning that the intra-Afghan talks in China planned for Oct. 28 and 29 will be the first meeting between Taliban and prominent Afghan politicians since a July round of talks held in Doha, where the Taliban maintain a political office.

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The Kabul Times.