As the March 10 deadline for the intra-Afghan negotiations approaches, Chief Executive Abdullah Abdullah’s office has finalized their list of delegates for the talks with the Taliban, a media report said.
In a statement on Monday, the office said that Abdullah had met with former Mujahideen leader Abdul Rab Rasul Sayyaf and former president Hamid Karzai where they discussed the recently signed US-Taliban peace agreement and ways to implement it, according to the TOLO News report
“The Chief Executive’s Office and the Stability and Convergence team, in consultation with a number of elders and political leaders in Afghanistan, have finalized a list (for the negotiating team),” Abdullah’s deputy spokesman Omid Maisam said.
“We hope that the Presidential Palace, as a part of the government of national unity, will participate (with the team).”
Meanwhile, the Presidential Palace said that the negotiating team will not only comprise governmental officials.
“We are not insisting that the delegation be all governmental people; we insist that the delegation be limited and effective and committed to the values of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan,” TOLO News quoted Waheed Omar, a presidential advisor, as saying on Monday.
But politicians have said the current opportunity for peace will be lost if the National Unity Government leaders delay in their decision on the negotiating team.
As of Tuesday, the Afghan government has eight days to form the negotiating team before the talks begin on March 10.