Abdullah Abdullah, the chairman of the High Council for National Reconciliation, has said that he has grave concerns that the Taliban will not show any flexibility for a political agreement with the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan once the US troops leave the country.
Abdullah said there clear are indications that show that the Taliban are trying to advance militarily before the withdrawal of foreign forces from the country.
“The point is that it will have an implication, an impact on the negotiations with the Taliban. Taliban may find themselves further emboldened and they may think, some of them at least, that with the withdrawal they can take advantage of the situation militarily, so why to get seriously into the negotiations?",” said Abdullah in an interview with AP.
Abdullah however warned the Taliban not to miscalculate the situation, saying that no one will be able to win militarily.
“It will be a big miscalculation on part of the Taliban should they think that they can win militarily, and I repeat that there are no winners through the continuation of the war,” he added in the interview.
Meanwhile, Qatar’s Foreign Minister Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al-Thani said that there has been no breakthrough in the peace negotiations between the Afghan parties so far.
“The announcement of the withdrawal of the US forces that will be in September 2021, which is in three months from now, and yet there is not an Afghan consensus how the future of Afghanistan will look like," he said. "Our main goals now is to achieve a ceasefire between the government and the Taliban and to achieve a consensus among the different Afghan parties."
In an address to Antalya Diplomacy Forum in Turkey on Friday, Abdullah called on the Taliban to engage in talks, reiterating that there is a “real opportunity” for peace in the country that should be utilized.
This comes amid reports that a six-member team from the Afghan Republic comprising key political leaders, including Abdullah Abdullah and former president Hamid Karzai, is expected to travel to Doha within the next few days to hold talks with the Taliban. The delegation is expected to visit Doha on Wednesday.
The Taliban has said that they welcome the delegation’s efforts for peace.