Pak-Taliban meeting: Afghanistan seeks UNSC intervention

Kabul: Afghanistan on Sunday voiced its concern to United Nations Security Council on Pakistan’s engagements with Taliban, saying it not only undermines ongoing peace efforts but violates Afghanistan’s National Sovereignty and UNSC Resolution 1988.

This comes in the wake of Pakistan’s invitation to Taliban to hold talks with Prime Minister Imran Khan.

In a letter written to the UNSC, Afghanistan’s mission to the United Nations mentioned that Pakistan’s invitation to the Taliban amounted to a violation of Afghanistan’s national sovereignty. As there was no coordination with the Afghan government, it poses a serious threat to Afghanistan’s security.

“The Taliban members were sanctioned by provisions of the UN Security Council s 1988 Committee’s sanctions regime,” it added.

Last week, Afghan President Ashraf Ghani said that his government is ready to allow the Taliban to open an office in Kabul, Kandahar or Nangarhar provinces to bring “lasting and honourable peace to the country”.

“If the Taliban want an office, I will give it to them in Kabul, Nangarhar or Kandahar by tomorrow.” Tolo news quoted Ghani, as saying.

“We will bring lasting and honourable peace to the country,” he added.

The President made these remarks during his visit to Nangarhar province, which is considered as a stronghold of the Taliban.

For sustainable peace, Ghani said that he is ready to sacrifice his life too.

While criticising Moscow talks which were held from February 5 to February 8, Ghani said, “The nation says that they (Afghan politicians and Taliban members) did not go to Mecca but they went to Moscow (for talks on peace); therefore, they should answer to this question.”

The government has criticised the talks from the beginning by saying that the talks hosted by Russia were against the spirit of Afghan-led and owned peace process.

The government also lodged a complaint with the United Nations over a recent trip by UN-blacklisted Taliban members to Moscow to attend talks.