Second Vice President Sarwar Danish on Sunday reiterated the Afghan government’s stance on peace, saying that the Taliban’s plan to reduce violence is a way of evading a real peace, and it is deceiving the people and the international community.
Reports indicate that the Taliban has agreed on a 7-10 day reduction in violence.
The Afghan government is insisting that the Taliban agree to a ceasefire.
Speaking at a ceremony in Kabul, Danish said the United States may sign a peace agreement with the Taliban, but it will not solve any problems in Afghanistan.
“The plan to reduce violence is vague and is a type of fleeing from peace, and it is deceiving the people and the international community,” said Danish. “With such justifications from the Taliban or their supporters the US may be willing to sign the agreement, but this will not solve the problem of Afghans.”
German Special Representative for Afghanistan Markus Potzel told a number of politicians that Germany is willing to host an upcoming intra-Afghan negotiation.
The UN also offered commentary:
“I am very hopeful that peace is possible. I believe it is and it will come but I cannot say with certainty that it will come this year but there could this year very well be a reduction in violence and that would already be a major contribution to people’s possibility of surviving and their welfare,” said UN Humanitarian Coordinator for Afghanistan Toby Lanzer.
Afghan politicians said the Afghan government should not impede the peace process by insisting on a ceasefire.
“It will cause pain to the nation of Afghanistan if their insistence (on a ceasefire) damages the peace process,” said Abdul Karim Khuram, the former chief of staff of ex-president Hamid Karzai.
The Taliban is aiming to reach a withdrawal agreement with the US by the end of January and is prepared to “scale down” military operations ahead of signing the deal, the Taliban's chief spokesman in Doha, Suhail Shaheen, told Pakistan’s daily newspaper Dawn on January 18.
“We have agreed to scale down military operations in the days leading up to the signing of the peace agreement with the United States,” Shaheen told Dawn.
Some Kabul residents interviewed by TOLOnews said that they are tired of war and that they want peace at the earliest time possible.
“Violence should be reduced and then peace should be established as well as a ceasefire,” said Asadullah, resident of Kabul.
“It will be good if violence is reduced. It will result in an enduring peace,” said Fazila, another resident.
“First, a ceasefire should be announced as we are tired of war,” said Asad, a resident of Khost province.