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Moscow Nine Point agenda for Afghan Peace Talks

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    Posted: 07-Feb-2019 at 1:10pm
Conclusion of the second day Peace Talks

A two-day peace meeting in Moscow has called for full withdrawal of U.S.-led forces from Afghanistan, a plan the Taliban said would pave the way for ensuring lasting peace in the country, local media Tolo News TV reported Thursday, quoting a joint declaration issued by Taliban representatives and Afghan politicians late Wednesday.

A number of key Afghan political parties and politicians and a delegation from the Qatar-based Taliban political office attended the two-day peace meeting, which ended late Wednesday, according to the report.

The meeting was held without the presence of Afghan government officials, as the negotiations were held by Russia-based Afghan associations.

The participants agreed on protection of social, economic, political and educational rights of women and freedom of speech in line with the Islamic principles and efforts to attract international assistance for the reconstruction of the country's infrastructures.

In order to promote an intra-Afghan dialogue to find a political solution to the ongoing conflict, the meeting outlined a nine-point declaration, according to which the two sides unanimously agreed to soon hold the next round of talks in Qatar, where Taliban's political office is based.

Issues agreed on the meeting also included continuation of a regular intra-Afghan peace dialogue, supporting Qatar talks and considering the talks a positive step towards ending war, bringing systematic reforms in all national institutions including security sector after signing peace deal, necessity of the regional and the major countries cooperation to determine a lasting and inclusive peace in Afghanistan, among others.

Releasing Taliban inmates who have completed their prison terms, removal of Taliban leaders' name from the UN blacklist and continuation of operation of Taliban political office in Qatar aimed at acceleration of peace talk, have also been discussed and agreed on.

The Afghan government has not reacted to the outcome of the meeting so far, but earlier in the week President Mohammad Ashraf Ghani said the politicians attending the Moscow talks had no executive power and were not officially representing the country.

The Afghan government has frequently said that it supported any peace efforts anywhere in Afghanistan or abroad.

Both Afghan and U.S. government have denied a specific timetable for foreign troops withdrawal from Afghanistan following U.S.-Taliban talks in Qatar late last month, unless peace was restored in the country.

"In recent days, I've heard some individual Taliban officials claim we have a troop withdrawal timetable for Afghanistan... No troop withdrawal timetable exists," U.S. special peace envoy Zalmay Khalilzad tweeted earlier on Thursday.

President Ghani also said that during his telephone conversation with U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo on Tuesday, he was assured that "military unity" would exist between the United States and Afghanistan, until a lasting peace is restored in Afghanistan.

"Taliban will start negotiation with Afghan government in next summit soon. It's a great progress," Abdul Satar Saadat, Afghan president's former legal advisor and former Chairman of Afghan Independent Electoral Complaints Commission tweeted earlier on the day.

  1. All parties in this conference have agreed that a dignified and lasting peace is the aspiration of all the people of Afghanistan and this principle has been achieved in Moscow.
  2. All parties agreed that in view of the current sensitive situation, the intra-Afghan dialogue must continue on regular basis.
  3. All parties agreed to support the ongoing talks in Qatar and consider these talks a positive step towards ending the imposed war on Afghanistan.
  4. All parties have agreed that systematic reforms be put in place in all national institutions including the security sector after a peace deal is signed
  5. All parties agreed that the cooperation of regional countries and major countries are essential to determine lasting and nationwide peace in Afghanistan
  6. All parties agreed that the values such as respect for the principles of Islam in all parts of the system, the principle that Afghanistan is a common home to all Afghans, support to a powerful centralised government with all Afghan ethnicities having a role in it, protecting national sovereignty and promoting social justice, to keep Afghanistan neutral in all regional and international conflicts, protecting Afghanistan's national and religious values and undertaking a unified and single policy.
  7. All parties agreed that to determine lasting peace in Afghanistan, the following points are important : the complete withdrawal of foreign forces from the country, asking all countries to avoid interfering in Afghanistan's internal affairs, providing assurance to the international community that Afghanistan will not be used against any other nation, protection of social, economic, political and educational rights of the Afghan women in line with Islamic principles, protection of political and social rights of the entire people of Afghanistan and protection of freedom of speech in line with Islamic principles, undertaking efforts for attracting international assistance for the reconstruction of Afghanistan's infrastructure. 
  8. All parties agreed that in order to create the atmosphere of trust and promote peace, in the first step, it is important that these items are taken into consideration, tackling the issue of all those inmates who are old, or suffering uncurable diseases or have completed their prison sentences and the removal of leaders of the Taliban from the UN blacklist, opening of an official political office in Qatar for acceleration of peace talks.
  9. All parties agreed that the next intra-Afghan meeting to be held in Doha, Qatar as soon as possible. The agreement was also made to work further on some other important issues related to the peace process in Afghanistan.

This declaration comes after two days of talks between some of Afghanistan's mainstream political parties and politicians and a delegation from the Taliban office in Qatar.

Source: Xinhua

Edited by AfghanistanNews - 07-Feb-2019 at 1:11pm
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