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Editorial: Khalilzad back in Kabul

The United States Special Envoy Dr. Zalmay Khalilzad, working on very hard task of reconciliation in Afghanistan is again reached in Kabul after stops in Islamabad, Berlin, and Brussels. Soon after his arrival in Kabul, Khalilzad said, that he will “stay here for some time on this trip” and that he will have consultations with a wide range of people. “Peace talks are entering a new stage and Afghans must be engaged more than ever,” Khalilzad said in a tweet.  

On his first day of stay in Kabul, Khalilzad met former President Hamid Karzai, incumbent President Ashraf Ghani and his team. Khalilzad said that they discussed building further international consensus for peace and “also regional requirements and implications for peace including recent positive movement in Afghanistan-Pakistan relations and opportunities peace will provide for regional connectivity and development”. “As Afghan peace process talks continue to progress, we agreed preparation for intra-Afghan negotiations now is essential,” Khalilzad said in a tweet about his meeting with President Ghani. During meeting Khalilzad Afghan leaders on his trips to Europe and his future plans in the peace process, and talks were mostly focused on intra-Afghan dialogue and that all sides welcomed Germany’s role in this regard. Khalilzad will also consulted peace talks and its progress with political leaders, civil society, and women, to facilitate an inclusive peace process. Now according to US Embassy, “as peace talks reach a critical phase, engagement with more Afghans across the country on how to achieve a negotiated political settlement that brings a durable peace is of utmost importance.” Most recently Khalilzad said that the United States and NATO will make a shared decision on remaining in Afghanistan or leaving the country. He also met the NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg on the Afghan peace process and thanked them for the “great sacrifices” made and their ongoing commitment. On concluding his detail talks in Kabul, Khalilzad likely to fly to Doha for meeting the Taliban leaders –considered the most important factor. Whatever might be outcomes of Khalilzad efforts but key to resolving of conflict in Afghanistan rests with the neighboring and regional countries. Through one or the other ways, Khalilzad needs to convince these neighboring countries as without its consent fulfilling of his assignments-reconciliation and return of peace in Afghanistan could be nothing else a dream-never materialized. It is the time for the US and its high ups utilize all of the available form’s which is essential if US is sincere in its claims of resolving the conflict in Afghanistan. Situation across Afghanistan is worsening day by day due to intensifying violent and terror acts. Khalilzad is well aware of the situation and reasons behind prolonged conflicts in Afghanistan, therefore he needs to focus on immediate neighbors of the motherland- can deliver a lot if works sincerely.

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