By: Lailuma Noori
Sources to media say 16 April has been finalized as a day for holding the Istanbul conference for Afghanistan peace and it is determined it will last for 10 days. The meeting is going to be organized and managed jointly by the United Nations, Turkey, Qatar and the US. The main agenda for the meeting is to draw a roadmap for signing a political agreement between the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan and the Taliban group.
According to the sources, the hosting countries are making effort to hold the meeting in a high decision-making level. On the other hand, the republic side is waiting to know who is in negotiating team of the Taliban group for talks in the Istanbul meeting. If high-ranking faces of the Quetta Council particularly Mullah Hebtullah and Mullah Yaqoub participate in the meeting, political and jihadi leaders will also attend the Istanbul meeting.
Afghan political experts believe that Turkey’s Istanbul meeting is very important for maintaining peace and stability in the country, saying if key members of the Taliban group participate in the meeting, it might have good result in reaching peace and stability in the country.
Afghanistan High Council for National Reconciliation is anticipating that Turkey’s Istanbul meeting will pave the way for an agreement on a comprehensive ceasefire and provide way to cross from the current crisis for Afghanistan.
The guiding principles for the Istanbul meeting include a permanent and countrywide ceasefire, conducting joint efforts for peace without mutual blaming, political participation under Islamic principles, transitional administration, equal rights for all citizens without discrimination, support for the rights of all Afghans, sincere efforts to achieve real coexistence, implementation of balanced social and economic plans, allowance of humanitarian workers’ activities, maintaining of Afghanistan’s friendly relations with the region and the world, prevention of Afghanistan from becoming a source of threats to other countries, and protecting Afghanistan from external interference.
Role of Turkey in Afghanistan peace is to support the Doha process and keep all channels of negotiations alive. The country’s diplomacy can maintain contact and relation with all Afghanistan’s neighbors to address challenges and obstacles facing Afghanistan peace and stability and this can only be completed when a new plan for cooperation is created in regional level.
The Istanbul – Heart of Asia process maintaining such a relation in 2011 and now it is time that a new framework and a stronger cooperation are created for maintaining peace and stability in Afghanistan. For making and maintaining such a contact, it is important that all involved countries in Afghanistan issue particularly Turkey should make effort to reinclude and exert a king of pressure on Pakistan to do its part for maintaining peace and stability in Afghanistan.
Besides, to reach this goal, Ankara should give new energy to the trilateral talks between Afghanistan, Turkey and Pakistan as such efforts have been effective in the past and reincluding of the Islamic republic of Afghanistan in the process is considered as new initiative for maintaining peace in Afghanistan.
It is said that Turkey’s Istanbul meeting is somehow similar to the first Bonn meeting as it is going to be held to decide on Afghanistan future system.