Defeat the spoilers


RECENT surge in violence in Afghanistan is proving true the fears that anti-peace elements within and outside the war torn country will spare no efforts to derail the ongoing Intra-Afghan peace process in Doha. Spoilers have become active to spill blood of the Afghans to achieve their ulterior motives.
In a despicable incident on Saturday, at least fifty people were killed and more than thirty others wounded in a car bomb attack that targeted a government building in eastern Afghanistan. The explosion occurred at an administrative building that also housed some military facilities in Ghani Khel district of Nangarhar province. A few days back a roadside blast in central Afghanistan had killed at least fourteen civilians, mostly women and children. One may not rule out more such bloody attacks in days and weeks ahead as the spoilers are out to create misunderstanding and mistrust between the negotiating teams- Afghan government and Taliban. By staying engaged the two sides can better frustrate and defeat evil designs of the enemy of peace. We understand that intra- Afghan talks will be a lengthy, complicated affair for both sides and there will be a lot of impediments to overcome. There will be many delicate and complex issues — from nature and scope of a power-sharing deal to issue of women’s rights and reintegration of Taliban into Afghan society and their share in the government. However, the current situation warrants both sides to immediately announce a permanent ceasefire as a confidence building measure. This will also show as to how far they are serious and committed to bring peace and stability to their country. Once ceasefire is announced, Afghan government should go after the terrorists backed by none other than India, as it is the only country that wants to use Afghanistan as a proxy to destabilise Pakistan. Flexibility will have to be shown by both sides to take the peace process to logical conclusion. During his three-day visit to Pakistan, Chairman of High Council for National Reconciliation of Afghanistan Dr Abdullah Abdullah made a promising statement that Afghan government team is ready to make compromises during negotiations. This is the spirit that is required to conclude the talks at the earliest and give a healing touch to Afghan people who have suffered immensely because of the prolonged conflict.