Afghan Senators Concerned Over Release of Taliban Prisoners

News - Afghanistan


Afghan senators have criticised the release of Taliban prisoners from Pakistan and questioned its benefit toward peace talks given that the Taliban continues to officially dismiss any negotiations with the Afghan government.

Senators on Sunday said that the Taliban have shown no preparation to talk, rather they have reacted to it by carrying out suicide attacks and planting hidden bombs in civilian areas.

"What kind of peace it is when the Taliban continue to do suicide attacks? As you saw, a number of children and women were killed in Nimroz as the result of the mines placed by the Taliban," senator Abdulhanan Haqyoon said.

"Unfortunately, the process of the peace talks is very passive. The High Peace Council has always tried to deal with the Taliban peacefully but they have shown no signs of being prepared to negotiate," the deputy speaker of the Senate Mohammed Alam Izadyar said.

Pakistan released at least nine prisoners of the former Taliban regime on Afghanistan's request last week as part of new efforts to show Pakistan's support for the peace process.

"If the Taliban seek peace, why don't they have a cease fire? There are these principles all over the world," another senator Najiba Hussaini said.

The senators criticised the release which happened even as civilians are being killed by roadside bombs planted by the Taliban, such as the one in Farah province on Friday which killed around 15 civilians, most of them children and women.

Their comments come as members of the Taliban leadership council, known as the Quetta Shura, have reportedly reviewed the Afghan peace process just days after the Pakistani government released the Taliban officials.

A member of the Shura, who didn't want to be named, told the Pakistani daily The Nation that the Taliban leadership council has welcomed new efforts by the Afghan and Pakistani governments.

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