A number of senators on Sunday described the Afghan politicians meeting in Pakistan in contrast to the national interests of Afghanistan, calling on the Afghan government to prevent the political elites from organizing “such meetings”.
Almost 57 Afghan politicians, including Hizb-e-Islami leader Gulbuddin Hekmatyar, former Balkh governor Atta Mohammad Noor, second deputy chief executive Mohammad Mohaqeq, and presidential candidate Abdul Latif Pedram, attended the Afghan peace conference in Pakistan which was titled the “Lahore Process”.
In an address to reporters on Saturday, Pakistan’s Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi said the meeting is a “complementary” of peace efforts in Doha, Moscow and other countries.
Presidential candidate Mohammad Haneef Atmar told reporters on Saturday that said he welcomes the meeting in Pakistan and that it was a good platform for the exchange of views between Afghan politicians and Pakistani officials.
Atmar said the two sides discussed Afghanistan-Pakistan relations and the Afghan peace process. “We stressed that there should be progress in both fronts: in the peace efforts and the bilateral relations,” he said.
Atmar mentioned that the “blame-game” between Afghanistan and Pakistan has not helped the two countries and that the Pakistani should come up with practical steps on their promises.
Afghan senators said that any meeting in absence of the Afghan government delegates or lawmakers is not in favor of Afghanistan.
“This meeting is an act of oppression against the government because the key to peace either lies in the government or the Taliban,” said Baz Mohammad Zurmati, member of the Upper House of the Parliament, the Afghan Senate.
“The government should use its disciplinary procedures and stop people from taking part in meetings anytime and anywhere they want,” the Senate Speaker Fazl Hadi Muslimyar said.