A group of peace convoy members who headed for Kunduz last week will rejoin the main group in Baghlan before heading for Mazar.
Taliban Prevents Peace Activists From Entering Certain Areas
Peace convoy members, who split from the main group in order to visit Kunduz, said on Monday the Taliban has prevented them from traveling through areas in the province under the group’s control.
The Kunduz group has been in the northern province for four days, after leaving the rest of their group behind in Baghlan province.
The Kunduz group plans however to rejoin the Baghlan group before continuing to Mazar-e-Sharif.
According to the Kunduz group’s spokesman, the Taliban told them they could not continue through the province due to security issues.
Meanwhile, residents of Kunduz province held a gathering to welcome the convoy. These residents said that they all want peace.
“Residents of Kunduz province participated at the gathering in order to support the convoy and join the convoy and deliver the message to every part of Kunduz province,” said Hakimullah, a resident of Kunduz.
The peace convoy members said they failed to deliver the peace message in areas under Taliban controlled.
“We tried to contact Taliban’s leaders and speak to them, but the members said they were not authorized to let us come into the areas under their control and meet with the people or speak to them; but if Taliban’s commanders want us to visit their areas we are ready to meet them and talk to them regarding peace and deliver a peace message to them,” said Basmillah Watandost the convoy’s spokesman.
“The current situation in Afghanistan has affected all Afghans. If peace in the country is achieved it will be to the benefit of all Afghans but if the war continues it is a loss for all Afghans,” Watandost added.
The convoy members have meanwhile called on the Taliban to let them continue their journey in order to deliver their peace message to the residents of the country.
“Residents of Kunduz are the same as Helmand residents and are tired of war and therefore we came to Kunduz in order to join Kunduz residents’ voice and to strengthen our voice for long lasting peace in the country,” said Malik Hamdard member of the convoy.
Kunduz residents have meanwhile also called on the Taliban to respond positively to the overtures of peace.