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Hekmatyar opposes closure of Taliban’s Qatar office

Hekmatyar opposes closure of Taliban’s Qatar office

Oct 02, 2017 - 15:28

KABUL (Pajhwok): The Hezb-i-Islami Afghanistan (HIA) leader wants the government to negotiate with the Taliban, opposing the closure of the the insurgent group’s political office in Qatar.

A statement from HIA said Gulbuddin Hekmatyar expressed the view during a meeting with tribal elders in Kabul. He said the Taliban’s Qatar office was a good address for peace talks. Closing it would be a wrong step, opposed by HIA, he said.

He added the continuing war with the Taliban was not a solution as rivals could not be defeated militarily. The government should negotiate with the Taliban and accept their reasonable demands, he believed.

By the same token, the HIA chief urged the Taliban to enter peace negotiations with the government. He said the current conflict fruitless for the Afghans, serving the interests of foreigners.

The former prime minister called upon Taliban to follow in HIA's footsteps: reaching a peace deal and shun the insurgency.

Last month, US President Donald Trump, in a meeting with his Afghan counterpart Ashraf Ghani in New York, suggested closing Taliban’s political office in Qatar.

The Qatar office was opened with US support a few years back, but former Afghan president Hamid Karzai had opposed the move.