Afghan peace process; growing suspicions of US intention

Sunday, 02 April 2017 01:44 Written by  Heart of asia Read 168 times

Regional and global consensus is viewed as a sole key to peace and stability in Afghanistan. After almost a decade and a half of fighting, all sides are now seemingly seeking a solution to the Afghan conflict through a political dialogue other than a military action, but there has not been as much progress in this regard as there should have been. Peace overtures have failed so far because of betraying of commitments by one of the sides. One such recent instance was the failure of the Quadrilateral Coordination Group (QCG), an Afghan peace initiative involving Afghanistan, the United States, China and Pakistan. Although QCG paved the way for first ever direct peace talks between Afghan government and the Taliban, it hit a dead end due to Pakistan’s non-fulfilment of commitments and some other issues.

 

Following the debacle of the quartet Afghan peace process, Russia, as a regional power which considers the deteriorating security especially the expansion of the Islamic State (IS) terrorist group in Afghanistan a threat to its interest, spurred into action and initiated several conferences named consultative meetings on Afghan reconciliation in Moscow. 

Russia had invited the United States to attend the third conference due to be held this month in Moscow, but Washington has turned down Moscow’s request as per Russian foreign ministry spokesperson. 

Washington’s refusal to be part of the Moscow conference is a proof of its unwillingness to find a political solution to the Afghan conflict. The US actions signal its persistence on military solution, an approach which will definitely protract the war that Afghans no longer can tolerate. Even though American officials publicly say they support peace negotiations between Afghan government and the Taliban, they are giving a priority to military solution in practice, of which a possible troop surge is a good example. 

The US who has thousands of troops in Afghanistan should prove in action that it prefers peace negotiations over military solution. The continuity of US policy as is further strengthens the concerns that the country is pursuing its interests in Afghanistan through war, and the objective of its military presence here is also not to prevent Afghanistan from becoming a safe haven for terrorists, but to contain regional powers and create problems for them.