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The Taliban ensure that they are “fully committed” to respecting the peace agreement with the US in Afghanistan.

February 20, 2020

The group's 'number two' highlights in the 'NYT' that “death and mutilation must end” Advocate for “building an Islamic system” through a “consensus” among Afghans

MADRID, Feb. 20 (EUROPE PRESS) –

The 'number two' of the Taliban, Sirajudín Haqqani, highlighted on Thursday in an opinion article published in 'The New York Times' that the insurgents “are fully committed” to strictly comply with the peace agreement they are about to Sign with the United States.

In the article, entitled 'What we, the Taliban, want', Haqqani states that “achieving the potential of the agreement, guaranteeing its success and lasting peace will depend on an equally scrupulous respect for its commitments by the United States.”

Thus, he affirms that “this historic agreement” will be “soon” and adds that “once it is fulfilled, the Afghans will see the departure of all foreign troops from the country”, while pointing out that the Taliban “will join all Afghan brothers and sisters to start moving towards a lasting peace and lay the foundations for a new Afghanistan. ”

Haqqani, who is also the leader of the Red Haqqani terrorist group, acknowledges that, while “a degree of trust has been created through talks with US negotiators,” the Taliban “are far from completely trusting” in Washington, “Just as the United States does not trust completely” in the group.

The 'number two' of the Taliban stresses that at the beginning of the contact process “the confidence that the talks were going to give results was close to zero”, before pointing out that the insurgents “did not trust the intentions of the United States after 18 years of war and several previous attempts at conversations that proved futile. ”

“We decided to try one more time. The long war has been a terrible cost to all. We believe it was not smart to reject any potential opportunity for peace, no matter how few the chances of success were,” he says.

In this regard, remember that “for more than four decades, Afghan lives have been lost daily” and that “everyone has lost a loved one.” “Everyone is tired of war. I am convinced that death and mutilation must end,” he argues.

Haqqani points out that the Taliban “did not choose war with the foreign coalition led by the United States” and insists that “the withdrawal of foreign forces has been the first and main demand” of the insurgents.

“Today we are at the door of a peace agreement with the United States, which is not a small milestone,” he says, while stressing that the Taliban delegation “has worked tirelessly” to achieve a pact.

“We stayed in the talks despite the restlessness and discomfort in our ranks due to the intensification of the bombing campaign against our villages by the United States and the changes in the demands and objectives by the Americans,” he said.

Therefore, he reiterates that “no peace agreement … arrives without compromises.” “That we have had these turbulent conversations with the enemy we have fought bitterly for two decades, even when it rained death from the heavens, is proof of our commitment to the end of hostilities and to achieve peace in the country,” he adds.

ACKNOWLEDGE THAT THERE ARE “CONCERNS AND QUESTIONS”

Haqqani acknowledges in the text that there are “concerns and questions” about the future of Afghanistan following the withdrawal of US troops, including the type of government, civil rights and the role of the Taliban themselves.

“My response to these concerns is that it will depend on a consensus among Afghans,” says the 'number two' of the Taliban, who argues that it will be necessary “a process of free discussions and deliberations for the first time of foreign domination and interference” .

“We are committed to working with other parties in a consultative manner and with genuine respect to agree on a new and inclusive political system in which the voice of all Afghans is reflected and where no Afghan feels excluded.”

In this way, he argues that “free from foreign domination and interference”, Afghans will be able to “find a way to build an Islamic system in which all Afghans have the same rights, where the rights of women guaranteed by the Islam (…) be protected and where merit is the basis for equal opportunities. ”

The fundamental rights of the population, and especially of women, were severely curtailed during the Taliban regime between 1996 and 2001 due to the strict interpretation of Islamic law by the group.

“We are also aware of concerns about the potential for Afghanistan to be used by disruptive groups to threaten regional and global security, but those concerns are oversized,” he says.

Thus, he notes that the information on the presence of these groups “are politically motivated exaggerations” and adds that “it is not in the interest of any Afghan to allow these groups to kidnap the country and turn it into a battlefield.”

“We will take measures in collaboration with other Afghans to ensure that the new Afghanistan is a bastion of stability and that no one feels threatened in our territory,” he promises.

SUPPORT OF THE INTERNATIONAL COMMUNITY

Therefore, Haqqani points out that there are “immense challenges” internally once the transition process is opened and asks “to work hard and sincerely to define a common future”. “I trust this is possible,” he says.

“If we can reach an agreement with the foreign enemy, we must be able to resolve internal disagreements through the talks,” he defends.

Haqqani also points out that another “challenge” will be to maintain the interest and a “positive attitude” of the international community during the transition period and points out that this support “will be crucial to stabilize and develop Afghanistan.”

“We are prepared to work from mutual respect with our international partners in the construction of long-term peace and reconstruction,” he says.

“Once the United States withdraws its troops, it can play a constructive role in the development after the war and the reconstruction of Afghanistan,” he said, while recognizing the importance of maintaining “friendly relations” with all countries.

Along these lines, he points out that the country “cannot afford to live in isolation” and that “the new Afghanistan will be a responsible member of the international community.”

“We will remain committed to all international conventions, as long as they are compatible with Islamic principles, and we hope that other countries respect the sovereignty and stability of our country,” he says.

Finally, Haqqani highlights that the country “will celebrate a new beginning” after the signing of the peace agreement, which will allow “compatriots to return from exile to a shared home in which everyone will have the right to live with dignity and peace “.