Reacting against a recent deadly explosion in Ghazni, the US special peace envoy, Zalmay Khalilzad, has called on the Afghan warring sides, the government and the Taliban, to reduce violence and move quickly to a ceasefire.
Condemning high level of violence, the US Special Representative for Afghanistan Reconciliation asserted that violence was aimed at undermining Afghans who are committed to peace, a permanent end to violence, and prosperous Afghanistan. “This enemy must be denied”, he noted.
According to the US envoy, the Afghan war and killing have lost legitimacy in the eyes of the majority of Afghan who need and yearn for peace and security.
6/7 With the US-Taliban Agmt, US-Afgh Joint Declaration, broad intl support for peace & start of intra-Afghan negotiations, the intra-Afghan war and killing have lost their legitimacy in the eyes of the overwhelming number of Afghans who need and yearn for peace and security.
— U.S. Special Representative Zalmay Khalilzad (@US4AfghanPeace) December 19, 2020
“The Islamic Republic and the Taliban must respect the demands of their people and reach a political agreement as soon as possible. The United States stands with the people of Afghanistan,” he asserted in a series of tweets posted late Saturday, December 19.
At least 15 children were killed in an explosion in Aghojan area of Gelan district of the southern Ghazni province on Friday, December 18. Local official told press that a motorcycle loaded with explosives went off in an area where children were playing.
Afghanistan Independent Human Rights Commission (AIHRC), however, gives a different account, saying that an unexploded mortar shell buried under soil went off which killed 15 children and wounded 20 others.