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Editorial: Dubai parlays

 Whatever might be its outcomes but people from war stricken Afghanistan are attaching great hopes and expectation with a fresh round of peace talks, commenced in Dubai United Arab Emirates Monday. So far United States, Afghanistan government and Taliban Qatar Political Office are participating in the talks. But it is being participated by representatives of Pakistan, Saudi Arabia and host UAE as well. However, so far initiating of first ever results-oriented dialogues aimed at finding out a negotiated, durable and acceptable political solution to long standing conflict and building up a consensus on ways and means for return of peace and stability in the country which is worst kind of violence and terror from last four decades. Leading politico-religious figure and member of Afghanistan High Peace Council Abdul Hakim Mujahid said that holding meetings with the Taliban representatives are very important for the trust building process. Taliban spokesperson Zabihullah Mujahid through a statement also confirmed, commencing of peace talks in Dubai but he didn’t give further details. On the other side Pakistan said that they are committed for peace and reconciliation in Afghanistan. Pakistan’s Foreign Office Spokesman tweeted that’ along with international community and other stakeholders, Pakistan is committed to peace and reconciliation in Afghanistan. Moreover, according to Afghan officials this could be the first practical step that Pakistan—a state harboring terrorist groups—would take to convince Taliban join the peace talks. It is premature to say about tenure or duration of Dubai Peace talks but one thing is very clear that this time a visible shift is being felt amongst the stances of stakeholders. The US Special Envoy for Afghanistan Dr. Zalmay Khalilzad may be credited for convincing Taliban for joining the peace talks and for the first time face-to-face talks with the members of Afghanistan High Peace Council and other leading figures. At the very outset of his assignments, Dr. Khalilzad had visited Kabul whereas he met with almost of top leaders including sitting President Ashraf Ghani and other high-ranking officials. All Afghan leaders have made a unanimous voice for peace and stability in the motherland which is now being listened and responded in rest of the world. Beside violent and terror acts being conducted by opposition Taliban fighters, couple of days back over 15 innocent civilians were killed and scores of other injured in the US and Afghan troops airstrikes in a village at Kunar province. The victims were included children and women. No one can justify such acts at any way. But the Afghans calling them Taliban or opposition are also responsible for such violent acts. In fact, the opposition fighters are sheltering in far flung mountainous regions among common Afghan families, therefore, these helpless families are being suffered in encounters and attacks between the two sides. Now in Dubai talks, the participants need to review the rich Afghan culture. The participants, especially those calling them as mediators and facilitators like Pakistan and Saudi Arab must make agree Taliban Political Office for declaring unconditional ceasefire as in chilly cold it is hard for the victims and relatives to even burry the victims or bring the injured to hospitals.

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