KABUL (Sputnik) – A temporary ceasefire, even if on terms set forth by the warring sides in Afghanistan, could contribute to stabilizing the situation in the conflict-torn country, Gulbuddin Hekmatyar, a former Afghan prime minister and the leader of the Party of Islam (Hezb-e Islami Gulbuddin, HIG), told Sputnik.
“If the countries of the region and the world agree to put pressure on both sides to reach an understanding of the need for a ceasefire — and the parties themselves understand the need for a ceasefire — then the situation can improve. I highlight, first of all, the need to agree on a ceasefire. Let it not be unconditional,” Hekmatyar said, adding that the upcoming Muslim holiday of Eid al-Adha can serve a good occasion for this.
The politician believes that the truce can become a step towards the formation of an interim government in Afghanistan. The agreement can be short-term at first, with a further extension, as the HIG leader sees it.
© AFP 2021 / ASGHAR ACHAKZAI
“We must accept the authorities for which the majority of the Afghan people will vote. A total delisting should come next, and if all parties, including the Afghan government, accept these conditions, then we will be ready to participate in the peace process,” Hekmatyar said.
Earlier this week, Afghan broadcaster TOLO News reported, citing sources, that Kabul will send a high-ranking delegation, including ex-President Hamid Karzai and head of the High Council for National Reconciliation Abdullah Abdullah, to Qatar’s Doha by the end of this week to hold talks with the Taliban*.
Violence has been on the rise in Afghanistan in recent weeks, as the Taliban have stepped up offensive since the foreign forces began to withdraw from the country.
*The Taliban is a terrorist group banned in Russia.