There is no military solution to Afghan conflict

There is no military solution to the Afghan conflict and political settlement is the only solution to end the ongoing conflict in Afghanistan, said a joint statement issued by the government and Taliban peace delegation on Thursday, July 08.

Hosted by Iran, the two sides met in Tehran, the Iranian capital. The government delegation and Taliban representatives unanimously agreed that peace efforts must continue to end the conflict in the country.     

The statement said both the Afghan government and the Taliban share a common understanding of the dangers of the continuation of the war. They also condemned the attacks on civilians’ homes, schools, mosques, and hospitals.

The meeting took place on Wednesday, July 07, in which a number of Afghan political figures led by Younus Qanuni, and a Taliban delegation led by Sher Mohammad Abbas Stanekzai, deputy chief of Taliban’s political office in Doha, participated.  

Speaking at the opening of the meeting, Javad Zarif, Iran’s foreign minister, said the United States has been defeated in Afghanistan and it has brought “many destruction” during its 20-year presence in the country.

Tehran is ready to help the process of peace talks between the parties in Afghanistan, Zarif announced during his speech.

The US Department however cautiously reacted to the presence of the Afghan government delegation and the Taliban delegation in Tehran on Wednesday, July 07.

Ned Price, a spokesperson for the department of state, said in a press conference, “this is what we’ve always said, that Afghanistan’s neighbors and countries in the region, they too have a stake in Afghanistan’s future. They need to use their influence in ways that are positive, in ways that are constructive, in ways that promote the cause of peace, in ways that support the people of Afghanistan.”

Negotiations between the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan and the Taliban kicked off for the first time in September 2020, in Doha, as part of the US-Taliban peace deal signed on February 29 of the same year.

The intra-Afghan talks, however, did not lead to any result and got bogged down in Doha.