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Afghan leaders speed up effort to end political impasse

AT News

KABUL: Afghan political and influential figures have accelerated efforts to mediate between Ashraf Ghani and Abdullah Abdullah—the two feuding Afghan leaders who both claimed victory in the September 28th Afghan vote, triggering Afghanistan into fresh wave of instability.

Former President Hamid Karzai and former Mujahideen leader Abdul Rab Rasul Sayyaf have begun mediation efforts to resolve the political tensions.

Hamid Karzai, Ustad Sayyaf, Mohammad Karim Khalili, and Mohammad Yunus Qanooni met with Dr. Abdullah Abdullah at his residency to find way out of current political stalemate.

The leaders also met with President Ashraf Ghani, where details yet to come out.

Political tension intensified after electoral bodies declared Ashraf Ghani as winner in the Afghan presidential race, where Abdullah, his main rival, not only rejected the result but vowed to form his own inclusive government.

Ashraf Ghani took oath of the office for a second term in the presidential palace, while, at the same time, his main rival for the presidency Abdullah swore himself setting the foundation of his ‘parallel government’.

This signalled that diplomatic attempts by the U.S. special envoy Zalmay Khalilzad one day earlier before separate inauguration mediated between the political rivals and broker a deal that had been foundered. The dilemma risks spilling into the impending peace talks with the Taliban – inevitable fallout of a rancorous wrangling that could culminate in a disaster Afghans cannot afford.

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