In the wake of US troop withdrawal salted for September 11, a false prospect that Taliban could overrun the country and once again establish Islamic Emirate is making the rounds. Obviously, the foreign troop pullout would make things tough with leaving Afghanistan with an uncertain future, but the Taliban should not take this out of context. Seemingly the Taliban are no more interested in peace negotiations where they already boycotted any peace summit to discuss and find a political settlement to the ongoing war. The Taliban also halted Doha talks and did not meet with the Afghan peace delegation for more than two weeks. This is truly an indication that the Taliban is in daydreaming of military victory caused by unconditional withdrawal of foreign troops. Important countries in the region like China, Russia, Iran, and Pakistan have already ruled out the possibility for the Taliban to implement its plan for reviving the Islamic Emirate of the 1990s in Afghanistan as that plan is no longer viable since the country has changed a lot in the past 20 years. Even the US did not support the return of the Emirate as Afghanistan moved toward a democratic system. The democratic institutions, including the freedom of expression and women rights beside so many others, must remain in place and become even more inclusive and this would be a wise decision for the Taliban to take this into account and immediately abandon violence and rather enter into a political process. It’s the most welcoming news that these regional countries have no consensus over the Taliban’s plan and that an Emirate is not a system that post-war Afghanistan could be built upon. It’s also promising to see that these countries are vowing to support a negotiated political settlement through a broad-based peace process where the Taliban should also be part of it. With this, the Taliban should not only engage in meaningful talks, but also come up to the fore and draw up a unified peace plan for the future development of their country. Since we are in a process of peacemaking, the upcoming Turkey conference is the best forum for both sides (the Afghan government and the Taliban) to use this opportunity not only to reduce violence, but also to agree upon a comprehensive ceasefire and the long desire of the Afghan people which is end to the violence should be respected and honored.




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