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US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo (R) and NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg talk during a NATO Foreign Ministers meeting at the NATO headquarters in Brussels on December 4, 2018. (Photo by JOHN THYS / AFP) (Photo credit should read JOHN THYS/AFP/Getty Images)

U.S., allies announce support for an ‘inclusive Afghan state’

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KABUL: Aimed a chaotic political situation in Afghanistan due to electoral dispute between President Ashraf Ghani and self-proclaimed president Abdullah Abdullah emanating from controversial September Afghan vote, the US and NATO—top alliance of the country, have put weight behind an inclusive government to be formed in Afghanistan.

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg in a telephonic conversation had discussed the need for Afghan leaders to form an inclusive government during a call.

The call was mainly to discuss Transatlantic Cooperation and the upcoming NATO Foreign Ministerial.

This is as the Trump administration is cutting $1 billion in assistance to Afghanistan after its rival leaders failed to resolve their dispute following Secretary of State Mike Pompeo’s visit last week.

They discussed how NATO is helping to coordinate Allied responses to the COVID-19 pandemic and the importance of countering efforts by the China and Russia to “spread disinformation and propaganda related to the virus.”

“They also discussed the need for Afghan leaders to form an inclusive government that makes reaching a political settlement a priority and bolsters the security of the state,” according to a readout issued by the US Department of State.

Pompeo thanked Stoltenberg for his efforts to move the Ministerial to a virtual format, demonstrating NATO’s adaptability and ability to maintain strong communication among Allies even in times of crisis.

To end the political impasse, the Afghan political and influential figures had accelerated efforts to mediate between Ashraf Ghani and Abdullah Abdullah—the two feuding Afghan leaders who took oath as Presidents in their palaces next door, triggering Afghanistan into fresh wave of instability.

Former President Hamid Karzai and former Mujahideen leader Abdul Rab Rasul Sayyaf, Mohammad Karim Khalili, and Mohammad Yunus Qanooni met with Dr. Abdullah Abdullah at his residency to find way out of current political stalemate.

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.

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