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Kabul floats power-sharing deal with Taliban

AT News

KABUL: Afghanistan government is seeking to forge a new government in alliance with Taliban and other stakeholders, said president’s security advisor on Monday – a power-sharing move that could assuage growing fears about resurgence of the militants.

Hamdullah Mohib, security adviser to President Ghani, has said that Kabul was determined to “form a government with the participation of the Taliban and all other forces”, Sputnik reported on Monday.

He maintained that civilians in vast majority of regions under Taliban control have taken up arms to fight. “That’s because people do not want the Taliban to reign in all of Afghanistan and dictate how they should live,” he said.

Mohib, however, said that Afghans “are not opposed to the Taliban joining the government”.

The Afghan government has long stuck to its guns opposing establishment of a transitional coalition state with the Taliban. But the rebels’ recent territorial and military gains seem to have sounded the alarms of the impending threat to the incumbent government in Kabul.

The government’s power-sharing ambitions with the rebels also echo Russia’s recent calls for formation of a coalition state.

Zamir Kabulov, Russian Special Envoy for Afghanistan, had earlier said that Russia was in favor of an inclusive and transitional coalition government in Afghanistan. “Russia prefers the establishment of a coalition government that determines the Taliban’s political status,” he had said.

As peace talks have been bereft of prospects and failed to yield a deal, the Taliban are leveraging their much-touted agreement with the United States to expand their influence across Afghanistan. They have swept through Afghanistan, gaining large swaths of territory, huge arsenals of weapons and tanks, and the dangerous mystique of an invincible force.

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