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Civilian casualties down 30pc last week as peace efforts accelerate

11 Apr 2021 - 17:38
11 Apr 2021 - 17:38

KABUL (Pajhwok): Nearly 60 civilians were killed and wounded in 11 attacks in different parts of the country last week as the High Council for National Reconcilitation (HCNR) is inching close to bring together different peace proposals an unify them into single peace plan for the upcoming pace conference in Turkey.

Civilians’ casualties have declined 30 percent last week compared to the previous week as the government and the Taliban declined to express their views on civilinas sufferrings.

Last week 11 attacks against civilians happened in nine provinces — Kandahar, Nangarhar, Farah, Balkh, Kabul, Baghlan, Faryab, Uruzgan — in which 12 civilians were killed and 48 others injured.

Government and the Taliban have not responded to Pajhwok question about civilian casualties.

In these attacks, security forces and the Taliban also suffered casualties but Pajhwok did not publish their figures because enough information with authentic sources was not available to support their casualty figures.

The preivous week, 30 people were killed and 55 others injured in 23 attacks in Baghlan, Balkh, Faryab, Helmand, Ghazni, Kabul, Kandahar, Kapesa, Khost, Laghman, Logar, Nangarhar, Paktia, Paktika, Takhar, Uruzgan and Maidan Wardak provinces.

Peace last week’s major developments:

  • Different stakeholders have prepared around 30 peace plans
  • HCNR’s committee is working to unify these proposals
  • President Ashraf Ghani presents peace plan that includes Peace Government and sticking to his stance of not resigning but if the opposition wants he will not contest future polls
  • Seven Parties: “We hope Turkey Conference will end 40-year of war in Afghanistan”
  • Turkey envoy to NATO: Major breakthrough should not be expected in Istanbul Conference
  • Civilian casualties declined 30 percent last week compared to the previous week

Peace Proposals:

The High Council for National Reconciliation (HCNR) has not yet finalized unification of different peace proposals ahead the Istanbul Conference on Afghan peace process unofficially scheduled for April 16.

This comes at a time when according to some sources the pattern of political system and fate of the incumbent government are said to be disputed points in peace proposals and post-peace era.

A key conference on Afghan peace process is scheduled in Istanbul, Turkey on April 16. Representatives from Afghan government, the Taliban, Afghan political parties, the UN, regional and major countries would attend the huddle.

A well-placed source told BBC few days back that Turkey, the US and the UN had agreed that the 10-day conference would begin on April 16, but the Taliban and Afghan government said that no decision in this regard had been taken. Other relevant t sides have also not spoken about the exact date of the meeting.

Different peace plans from Republic side:

According to the reports Republic side —- Afghan government and some political parties —- have prepared around 30 peace plans for upcoming Turkey Conference and dispatched them to the HCNR.

Earlier a well-placed source from the HCNR told BBC some issues such as the creation of a political system in post-peace era, alternative to interim government period, structure of interim government and some other issues that could ensure durable peace were yet to be agreed upon.

How HCNR manages different peace plans:

FaridonKhawazon, spokesperson for HCNR, said that the peace body’s committee dealing with unification of peace plan had discussed the Presidential Palace peace proposal while the HCNR leadership will hold a meeting for finalization of peace plan in coming days.

This comes as Ahmad Walli Massoud, head of the Ahmad Shah Masoud Foundation, on his facebook page wrote: “We are preparing a peace plan called Durable Peace in Afghanistan and would present it to the international community after consultation with the people and relevant stakeholders.”

Political parties — Hizb-e-Islami, Jamiat-i-Islami, WahdatIslami, Jumbesh-i-Islami, IslamiMahaz, Afghan Mellat and IslamiWahdat party members during a meeting on April 8, stressed that available opportunity for peace should be fully utilized and pledged to prepare one peace plan for the upcoming Turkey Conference.

But Senior HIA Leader Humayon Jareer said that political parties had not agreed on one peace plan, adding these parties shared some commonalities and planned to share their views with all parties, including the Taliban.

Key controversial points:

According to an article in Hasht-e-Subh, a daily Afghan newspaper, the (government and political parties) are divided over two issues including (the structure of government after a peace agreement and the fate of the current government).

The newspaper says that one of the reasons delaying the government’s peace plan was unification of proposals from other political parties. The paper said that the government, HCNR and political parties had agreements over other issues.

According to the newspaper, some political parties and figures emphasize on establishment of a decentralized government compared to the current one while the government and politicians support a centralized presidential system.

A number of Meshrano Jirga or upper house members say that if the proposals of political parties and others are not unified, it may pave way for the enforcement of the US peace plan.

Based on this plan, governmental affairs are divided equally between Taliban and current government while some affairs are given to the leadership of transitional government.

A week back, President Ashraf Ghani had said that they were ready for Turkey Summit but added, “It is not the time when others write plans for us and then order us to read them, no one should think that Afghan leadership should resign or give up to a shameful agreement.”

The government’s peace plan divided into three phases (political agreement, peace government and peace building, state building and creation of market), also mentioned about creation of a peace government.

Agreement over optimal situation, ceasefire, international observation, agreement over principles of a peace government, efforts for fighting against terrorism and regional and international guarantee, and approval of all these issues by Loya Jirga is first phase of the plan.

The second phase of the plan includes facilitating an optimal situation for peace, enforcement of the constitution and a legal mechanism for its implementation, governance and development programs, security, ceasefire, fighting against terrorism and elections.

The third part of the plan includes framework of the constitution, political agreement, repatriation of refugees, security, governance and development.

Will Turkey Summit solve Afghanistan problem?

HIA, Jamiat-i-Islami Party, Junbish-i-Islami, National Islamic Front, Afghan Millat, Wahdat-i-Islami and some other political parties’ political committees’ representatives in a press conference said that the Turkey conference on Afghanistan peace would end the four-decade old Afghan war and no one should disrupt the peace process for their personal interests.

However, BasatÖztürk, Turkey envoy for NATO, a day earlier told Pajhwok that there should be no high expectations from the conference.

“We host this conference, but we need the support of all key regional and world players; but before anything else, the Afghan leaders should show their will for reaching a political settlement for Afghanistan. All classes of the society should see themselves in it; regional countries and the international community should support it. The national peace should turn into a regional and world peace so all support it,” he added.

Öztürk said that Afghan peace was a national process and any decisions should be made based on the leadership and ownership of the Afghan people. No foreign country should try to impose their own political views on Afghan sisters and brothers, he added.

 Public gatherings:

People in Kabul, Balkh, Nangarhar and Paktika provinces gathered about peace last week.

Women and Children Legal Research Foundation in Kabul in a meeting termed women’s participation weak in the peace process.

A meeting organized by Kabul governor’s house was also attended by thousands of people who insisted that the fate of Afghan forces should not be used as an excuse for political deals and the rights of the public should protected in the peace process.

Hundreds of people in Balkh province also in a gathering stressed on the establishment of peace in the country. Similar meetings were held in Nangarhar and Paktika provinces.

Nh/Mds/ma

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