Government has said rumors of plans to hand over part of the country to the Taliban are untrue.
No Plan To ‘Split The Country’: CEO’s Office
The Afghan government has said reports of it handing over parts of the country to the Taliban as part of the peace process are completely untrue.
The Taliban meanwhile said in a statement on Sunday that any such move would mean the “partition of Afghanistan”.
In the statement the group said it opposed the move.
The Afghan government said there was no truth in the rumors and that there were no plans to hand over parts of the country to the Taliban.
One of the earliest reports in this regard was by the New York times which noted Gulbuddin Hekmatyar, the reconciled leader of Hizb-e-Islami group, had suggested that in order to bring peace, government should handover some parts of the country to the Taliban.
“In peace talks, the plan to split the county was not on the agenda at all; our plan is that those who are willing to join the peace process should come and live in the country freely,” said Jawed Faisal, deputy spokesman for the CEO Abdullah Abdullah.
While the Afghan government is hoping for peace, the Afghan security institutions will still continue their military offensive against insurgents.
“We want peace, but we will fight against those who continue to wage war,” a defense ministry spokesman Dawlat Waziri said.
Interior ministry spokesman Najib Danish meanwhile said: “We will fight till the end against those who do not endorse peace and we will drive them off the battle fields.”
However some experts are skeptical about government’s peace policy.
“The Taliban will not endorse peace talks without increased military pressure,” said MP Musa Khan Nusrat.
President Ashraf Ghani recently hosted the Kabul Process meeting where he offered a peace deal to the Taliban in a bid to get them to the negotiations table.
Ghani sent a strong message to the Taliban and said peace is now in their hands. He called on the group to accept the offer and to join the peace process and together with Afghanistan “save the country”.