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Editorial

Iran’s honest cooperation important for Afghan peace talks

Waving flag of Iran and Afghanistan

Iran and Pakistan are two of the important neighbors that Afghanistan share her borders with. Both these countries have played a significant role in Afghanistan situation in the last four decades.
While, the not so recent Afghan-led peace talks has again heightened the curiosity and brought South Asian region into the forefront. As number of states are playing instrumental role in the execution of peace process and so do Iran. It is observed that Iran has a due share in the internal affairs of Afghanistan due to shared history and hosting millions of Afghan migrants. And it is no harm in saying that Iran is among one of the important countries that has the potential to play a significant role in bringing peace in the region.
In a bid to establish regional concerns for peace in the country as well as address the concerns of the neighboring countries on peace process, Dr. Abdullah Abdullah, the chairman of the High Council for National Reconciliation, left Kabul yesterday morning for a two-day visit to Iran to discuss the Afghan peace process.
Dr. Abdullah will meet with Iranian President Hassan Rouhani, Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif and other Iranian officials to discuss “Afghan peace in Doha and the need for regional consensus and support for peace efforts in Afghanistan.”
While departing for Tehran, the HCNR chief said that each country has its impact (on the Afghan peace process) and the continuation of the war in Afghanistan has affected the people.
The peace negotiation officially started on September 12; however, so far, direct talks have not started because of disagreements on procedural rules for the negotiations. Violence has continued to increase in the last few weeks amid ongoing peace negotiations in Doha.
Afghan peace process has several dimensions, where regional cooperation is key to its success. Although there are differences between Iran and the west, but these countries needed to put aside their hostilities and join hand for peace in the war-torn country.
Today, strategic cooperation between Iran and the West should be theoretically possible because they have converging interests and common aversions in Afghanistan, such as the re-emergence of al-Qaida fighters, the Taliban and narco-traffickers. Indeed, Western capitals and Tehran could coalesce around stabilizing Afghanistan.
Iran has been said to have ties with senior and junior leadership of the Taliban, and has reportedly provided limited military support to key Taliban factions and smaller rival factions that oppose the peace process.
Since the group has signed peace deal with US and that a number of regional and world countries supported the move, it is essential for Iran as well to support the deal and join hand with the Afghan government in development of the country.
It is hoped that HCNR chief’s visit to Iran could produce positive result and attract the neighboring country’s support of the pace process. indeed, Iran’s role in the peace process is vital and for that purpose, Iran has been supporting rather initiating a peace process and has had several direct talks with the Taliban in Tehran. It is noteworthy that Iran maintains strong hold in the region and the peace talks will be incomplete if Iran is omitted from them and if the country doesn’t give up support to the militants in the country. Iran’s honest, true and firm steps needed to make success the Afghan peace process.

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