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Ghani promises peace, stability

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AT-KABUL: President Ashraf Ghani on Wednesday promised peace, stability and welfare in the country, amid Taliban’s frequent denial to accede to his peace talks offer.

“Forming the national unity government was not easy, but it was the necessity and demand of the time. I hope that the people of Afghanistan get assured that we will found peace, stability and welfare,” Ghani stated in a gathering on the occasion of the 23rd commemoration of martyrdom of the former leader of Wahdat-e-Islami party, late Abdul Ali Mazari.

Ghani also assured that Afghanistan would “never go back to the past”.

He mentioned peace offer to the Taliban, saying that peace was the only option to solve the current problems.

Ghani had previously called on the Taliban that his government would hold “unconditional talks” with them. The insurgent group has not either agreed or opposed Ghani’s offer, but it had repeatedly rejected any peace offers from the former and present governments.

But the US Defense Secretary, James Mattis said in his latest visit to Kabul that “some small circles inside the Taliban group are interested in peace talks with the government of Afghanistan”.

Mattis said that victory was possible in Afghanistan, but not through continuing war. “This is possible in peace with Taliban.”

Head of the High Peace Council, Mohammad Karim Khalili, called the upcoming Afghan year important for ensuring peace. He said that significant steps would be taken towards peace in the next Afghan year.

“We are going to take important steps towards peace and end or at least decrease of war,” Khalili said. “I would like to assure the people of Afghanistan that the high peace council has already made efforts in different parts and I am very optimistic to hold direct or indirect, official or unofficial talks with the opposition side.”

He said people would not be hopeful for their future until war is going on. It is difficult to launch big national projects.