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Wolesi Jirga welcomes quadrilateral meeting in Islamabad

Govt asked to draw red line in peace talks

By Akhtar M. Nikzad-KABUL: The Wolesi Jirga or Lower House of Parliament welcomed Monday the quadrilateral meeting among delegations of Afghanistan, Pakistan, China and the United States to seek roadmap to resume peace negotiations between Afghan government and Taliban.

Delegations of the four countries on Monday came together in Islamabad to talk on the restart of the peace talks.

Lawmakers in the Lower House of Parliament welcomed China and the US presence as facilitators of peace negotiations, asking Beijing and Washington to convince Islamabad to pressure over Taliban for the negotiations.

Deputy Speaker of Wolesi Jirga, Nazir Ahmadzai said: “We hope the quadrilateral meeting will reach positive results.”

The peace talks between the government and Taliban collapsed last summer when the government announced the death of the group’s founder and leader Mullah Omar. Since then, the group seems to have lost unity as a number of the insurgents do not recognize Mullah Akhtar Mansoor as Omar’s successor.

Taliban representatives did not participate in the quadrilateral session, but the high peace council said that despite political differences, “Taliban is enthusiastic to resume peace talks to the government.”

Earlier, Afghan officials claimed that Pakistan vowed to offer a list of Taliban officials who are interested to the talks and also those who endeavor to continue insurgency against Afghan government.

Parliamentarian Abdul Qayyoum Sajjadi said: “The government should not only concentrate on peace dialogues with Pakistan but shall take tough military measures for thwarting Taliban threats in their summer offensive.”

“Government should clarify its peace and military strategy for Taliban, because war and peace are two sides of the same coin and focus over peace would damage security of the country,” he asserted.

Lawmakers underlined that government is responsible to count the constitution and national interests as redlines in peace.

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