Karim said thousands of armed Hizb-e-Islami fighters will join security forces once Hekmatyar settles in Kabul
Hekmatyar Expected In Kabul Within Next Three Weeks
Amin Karim, head of Hekmatyar’s Hizb-e-Islami’s negotiations delegation on Tuesday said their leader Gulbuddin Hekmatyar is currently on the battlefields in Afghanistan but is expected to arrive in Kabul in the next couple of weeks.
“Our Mujahid brother is in Jihad strongholds. He is in the country and will come to Kabul,” he said.
According to Karim, the joint committees implementing the peace deal are working on ways to maintain Hekmatyar’s security and on finding him accommodation. This will take between two to three weeks to finalize, he said.
“Hekmatyar is not in Kabul, but Hizb-e-Islami members are in prisons or living as refugees and we hope these technical problems will be solved in the next two to three weeks,” Karim said.
According to him, Hizb-e-Islami submitted a list of names of 2,500 prisoners to be released, but Mohammad Akram Khpalwak, a senior adviser to the president said the list was shortened to 480 names and that more names may be deleted as some could be Taliban members.
Khpalwak said some prisoners will be released as a sign of good will before Hekmatyar arrives in Kabul.
The peace accord between Hizb-e-Islami and the Afghan government was signed four months ago, and according to Karim, since then, joint committees have not only been working on the release of Hizb-e-Islami prisoners but also on the issue of securing land for returning Hizb-e-Islami refugees.
Government has created eight committees to implement the peace deal.
Karim said thousands of armed Hizb-e-Islami fighters will join security forces once Hekmatyar settles in Kabul.
Hamid Azizi, a spokesman for Hizb-e-Islami, meanwhile said a number of key people in the group are among the prisoners due for release.
Azizi said Hizb-e-Islami has been waiting for the United Nations (UN) to remove Hekmatyar’s name from its blacklist, but that after Russia and France raised objections, the UN does not appear to be moving forward on the issue.
Khpalwak however said they are trying to convince the two countries to agree to the move.
Meanwhile, a Hizb-e-Islami member has said 500 men will be appointed to maintain Hekmatyar’s security in Kabul.