China mediates Afghanistan crisis

UNITED STATES (OBSERVATORY NEWS) — With the war in Afghanistan entering its nineteenth year, and the failure of several attempts by the United States to resolve the stalled peace process in the country, Kabul is taking its face east to Beijing; in search of a new way to resolve the conflict.

In the wake of a series of clashes and violent clashes between government forces and Taliban militants, amid initiatives to revive peace talks in various countries, China’s attempt to host the warring parties at a rare peace meeting was welcomed by Afghans.

According to the office of President Mohammad Ashraf Ghani, the government of Kabul will send a comprehensive team of negotiators to Beijing; to participate in talks with Taliban leaders.

Siddiq Sadiq, a spokesman for Ghani, told reporters in Kabul on Sunday (November 2nd) that discussions with the parties on the composition of the team were still ongoing.

“This team can then represent and defend Afghanistan, democracy and all the hard-won values,” Siddiqui said.

The Taliban, for its part, accepted the Chinese invitation, and nominated a team to attend the conference, headed by their deputy leader, Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar; but it still does not recognize the government of Kabul has not yet held talks with them.

All this follows a historic peace agreement with the United States, after nine months of negotiations in the Qatari capital Doha, before President Donald Trump canceled the talks on September 7 after a series of deadly attacks in Afghanistan.

Government sources confirmed to Anatolia, that this crucial meeting, will remain suspended until the announcement of the results already postponed for the historic presidential elections in Afghanistan.

– Conflicting interests –

China can offer a new, more dynamic impetus to revive the peace process and resolve the conflict in Afghanistan, according to local political experts.

Wahid Majda, a former Taliban government official (1996-2001) who is also an expert on the Taliban, said: “Host countries for such conferences usually only serve as an intermediary to facilitate peace talks. But China is a country that the Taliban want to see as a guarantor or observer to sign. The final peace agreement, a clear sign of confidence.”

“The Kabul government also sees Beijing as a neutral player in this rather complex struggle, among many players who often struggle for conflicting interests,” he said.

Other major actors (the United States, Russia and Pakistan) also welcomed China’s proposal to host the upcoming Afghan peace conference in Beijing, which was expressed at a quadripartite meeting attended by envoys from China, Russia, the United States and Pakistan to Afghanistan in Moscow on October 25.

However, Wahid Majda believes that regional conflicts of interest between China, India, the United States and Pakistan can only be overcome if understanding is reached at the highest levels in Washington and Beijing.

Wang Wenwen, an analyst with China ‘s Global Times newspaper (published under the auspices of the Communist Party’ s People’s Daily), told Anatolia that the current period was a test of Afghan resolve.

“Every force is striving for some kind of hegemony in Afghanistan. The United States fears that China may fill the vacuum it leaves after the proposed withdrawal of its troops, and India has long been competing with China for regional leadership. This is a test of government wisdom.” Afghan to balance the interests of these forces.”

“Beijing can strike a balance between Pakistan and Afghanistan or even India.”

– Ceasefire –

Against the backdrop of continuing Taliban insurgency and the failure of US-Taliban peace talks, President Ashraf Ghani’s top national security adviser, Hamadullah Moheb, told a news conference that lasting peace in Afghanistan could only be achieved if Pakistan persuaded the Taliban to give up their weapons instead. Of seeking privileges through negotiations with the United States.

“We have found that the Taliban are not a unified entity, they do not have the ability to control the war. Some of the key Taliban leaders have joined IS,” he said.

He also pointed to the existence of cracks in the ranks of the Taliban despite the fact that its militants were able to launch deadly attacks in different parts of the country.

He explained that in the context of the revival of peace talks, must also be negotiations with Pakistan, and ensure that Islamabad in return not to support the militants or give them safe havens.

He stressed: “Guarantees of peace by both the Taliban and Pakistan is important.”

Amid renewed efforts to revive stalled reconciliation talks, the Afghan government last month put forward an ambitious seven-point peace plan.

The plan calls for negotiations with the United States and NATO, negotiations with the Taliban, and with Pakistan, building consensus with regional and international partners, discussions with the West and international organizations, strengthening institutions at the national level, and addressing grievances at home.

The Taliban rejected this plan as well as a ceasefire.

Akram Al-Arifi, a professor at Kabul University, said: “In the face of this stalemate, there is always a need to save face and resume talks in a way that preserves the dignity of the parties involved.”

Al-Arifi said that China, through its good relations with Pakistan and the Taliban, can help push these talks as a neutral partner and revive the talks in a renewed spirit.

China has shown great interest in extracting the vast and untapped mineral resources in Afghanistan, as well as investing nearly $ 50 billion in infrastructure projects in neighboring Pakistan as part of the Sino-Pakistani economic corridor linked to the Belt and Road Initiative.

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