Thursday, June 10, 2010

Kabul Jirga Failed To Deliver Desired Dividends

A consultative peace council was held in Kabul yesterday to resolve political issue of Afghanistan and to end the war. Up to 1,200 people attended the Jirga (assembly of elders). It took one and a half month to prepare for the Jirga, however, according to the Afghan Government it succeeded in holding the consultative peace Jirga despite numerous difficulties.

Restoring Peace
According to Waheed Umar, spokesperson for Afghan President Hamid Karzai, only those Afghans were invited to attend the Jirga who could extend their help, through this Jirga, for the resolution of Afghan dispute and that the Afghan Government is able to resolve this long-standing issue, in any shape, with rival armed Taliban. From the very beginning spokesman of Afghan President Hamid Karzai said that this Jirga will do a lot in restoring peace, despite the fact that the participants of the Jirga have so far not expressed their opinion. He said that those personalities were invited to the Jirga who represented the Afghan people.

We have regards for Waheed Umar's statement and think that if Afghans can sit together and can find a way to douse the fire, which has been raging for years, then we pray to God for their success. But according to former Afghan Foreign Minister Dr Abdallah and the opposing armed Taliban, steps required for the Jirga were not taken. It was necessary that a lot of work should have been done on the political front for the Jirga. If it was difficult to make the armed Taliban attend the Jirga, at least the backing of Dr Abdallah and his supporters should have been achieved.

Capability To Resolve Issues
This is the reason why there is a lack of political support for the Jirga within and outside Afghanistan. The US and some other countries have backed Hamid Karzai during his visit to the US on the 12th of last month. It was required for Hamid Karzai to reach to Muslim countries, Afghan religious scholars, national leaders, and neighboring countries in order to win support of armed Taliban and his (Karzai) political rival Dr Abdallah or at least make them agree not to oppose the Jirga.

As today the political opponent (of Hamid Karzai) Dr Abdallah says that this Jirga has neither national status nor has the capability to resolve the issues and the rival armed Taliban say that the Jirga has been convened to protect the lives of foreign troops. Had the Afghan government made efforts for creating consensus then the opponents would not have raised their voice against the Jirga.

Afghan president, on the suggestion of the British foreign minister, should have sought support from Pakistan and other neighboring countries. There was a need that the unhappy armed groups should have been influenced and persuaded to participate in the Jirga through the council of religious scholars, formed two years ago in Kabul. In that case there had to be a possibility of success of convening the Jirga.

Political and Warring Sides
The Afghan government says that US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has assured that they will not leave Afghanistan alone, cannot solve the Afghan problem. If the US makes efforts and extend help for the sake of peace, we will consider these in the interest of Afghan people. Anybody who takes step for the solution of Afghan problem should be appreciated.

According to UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon, $60 million from foreign countries should be distributed among the armed groups, so that they renounce fighting. These dollars also cannot resolve Afghan issue. For the solution of this problem, first talks should be held with the Afghan people, neighboring countries, Muslim countries and with those religious scholars who could bring together both political and warring sides for talks and then peace should be established between them through a peace Jirga. The current situation in Kundoz, Baghlan and Badakhshan inside Afghanistan is not the same like that of 2009. There is a need of a sincere leadership to resolve the dispute of Afghanistan. When there is peace in Afghanistan, peace will return to the whole region.

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