A senior Afghan official on Thursday accused the U.S. peace negotiator of “delegitimizing” the Afghan authorities in an unusually public assault reflecting Kabul’s mounting alarm over its exclusion from U.S. talks with Taliban insurgents.
Nationwide Safety Adviser Hamdullah Mohib’s feedback to reporters in Washington had been probably the most strident public complaints to this point by an Afghan official over the Kabul’s authorities’s absence and the function of U.S. Particular Consultant Zalmay Khalilzad, an Afghan-born veteran diplomat.
“Understanding Ambassador Khalilzad’s historical past, his personal private historical past, he has ambitions in Afghanistan. He was desirous to run for president twice,” Mohib stated hours earlier than scheduled talks on the U.S. State Division. “The notion in Afghanistan and folks in authorities suppose that maybe, maybe all this discuss is to create a caretaker authorities of which he’ll then turn out to be the viceroy.”
Viceroy is a politically loaded time period in South Asia because it was the title of the colonial administrator of British-ruled India.
A second spherical of U.S.-Taliban talks lasting 16 days ended on Monday in Doha, Qatar. The perimeters reported progress, however no remaining deal on a withdrawal of U.S.-led worldwide forces and preparations that the Taliban ensures militants wouldn’t use Afghanistan to stage assaults as al Qaeda did for Sept. 11, 2001.
“We predict both Zal, Ambassador Khalilzad, doesn’t know learn how to negotiate (or) there could also be different causes behind what he’s doing,” Mohib stated.
“The rationale he’s delegitimizing the Afghan authorities and weakening it, and on the identical time elevating the Taliban can solely have one strategy. It’s positively not for peace,” he stated.
Khalilzad was not instantly accessible for remark. A State Division official who requested anonymity stated Mohib’s remarks “don’t in any approach replicate the excessive degree of U.S.-Afghan coordination on all issues involving peace in Afghanistan.”
The official described Mohib’s feedback as “inaccurate and unhelpful, and we can be responding to them privately as we speak.”
U.S. negotiators are also urgent the Taliban to just accept a ceasefire and talks on Afghanistan’s political future with representatives of Afghan society, together with President Ashraf Ghani’s authorities.
The Taliban rejects direct negotiations with the Kabul authorities, accusing it of being a U.S. puppet.
The lead Taliban negotiator, Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar, on Thursday assured Afghans that that they had no cause to worry a settlement.
Afghan officers fear that Khalilzad’s precedence is securing at Kabul’s expense an finish to the practically 18-year U.S. army involvement to meet a pledge President Donald Trump made to finish America’s longest conflict.