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Editorial: Edgy talks

With the peace talks stalled, the details of intensifying doubts on the real intentions that are exactly cooking in Doha, and its implication to trigger Afghanistan into further uncertainty, are increasingly hard to pin down. But, of course there’s one certainty—the Afghans will bear the brunt of what to come ahead. Afghan masses would be lucky if peace talks bear fruits, and consequences would be fatal if it fails. Taliban has proved true to their word not to attack US and NATO troops, and no Americans have lost their lives in Taliban violence since a peace deal hammered out in February between them. It’s good for them, but what about Afghan military and civilians. Within 24 hours of barb violence, at least 15 people were killed, 20 more wounded. War also intensified across the country. Most likely, the Taliban leadership may see battlefield wins as upping their leverage to the table of talks, and more possibly screening the US that has control on more territory than the government. Indisputably, it is uneasy talks to have turned a corner from affiliation marked by suspicion and downright hostility toward a peaceful settlement in the perimeter of decades of war and discriminatory remarks to blot the Taliban and the peace process. Unrelenting shoves by the Trump administration to withdraw small remaining troops from Afghanistan could damage the perspective of the peace talks and also embolden the Taliban group to refrain from staying at the negotiating table, considering withdrawal as military victory in simplest blend to overrun Kabul by toppling the existing regime. This is weird, but not out of indecision. Irresponsible withdrawal will obviously have its implication that must do away with by standing unitedly and firmly not to let the country go to the back epoch of civil war. The US deal with Taliban has some contents that are kept secret from Afghan officials, and Khalilzad is eyeing to impose something in the garb of peace. It seems nothing sizable for the Afghans but another deception. None of Afghanistan politicians were involved in the US-Taliban talks, and Khalilzad is shooting in the dark by keeping secrets clandestine. Indeed, we must not let peace opportunities slip away, but it’s also necessarily essential to resist the Taliban’s desire to accept their peace deal with the US that could mean surrender not negotiation.

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