Afghan government and Hezb-e-Islami reach draft accord

Afghanistan and Hezb-e-Islami sign a preliminary agreement, seeking to revive the stalled talks with Taliban

Photo by: Reuters
Photo by: Reuters

Gulbuddin Hekmatyar, the leader of Afghan militant group, Hezb-e-Islami.

Afghanistan signed on Wednesday a preliminary agreement with Taliban allied Hezb-e-Islami led by former Prime Minister of the country, Gulbuddin Hekmatyar with great hope to reach a full peace accord.

Mohammad Khan, first deputy to government's Chief Executive Officer Abdullah Abdullah, said, “We are optimistic about this agreement and we strongly support it.”

“This doesn'’t mean it’ is finalised,” he added.  

Hezb-e-Islami group, which is also linked to Al Qaeda and the Taliban, has been designated as global terrorist organisation by the US.

The draft agreement has three sections and 26 articles which includes a pledge for the release of prisoners, according to the Diplomat.  

Additionally, the government will work to remove Hekmatyar and Hizb-e-Islami from UN terrorist blacklists.

Hezb-e-Islami fighters pose with weapons as they sit in their compound at an undisclosed location in southern Afghanistan

It is expected that the deal would not improve the country’s security directly in the short term due to the insurgency playing only a minor role in the Taliban led violence.

However, the latest move indicates that insurgent groups have been trying to enter into the political process rather than a battlefield.

The United States has also welcomed the latest move between the Afghan government and militant group.  

During a news briefing in Washington, State Department spokesman John Kirby said all groups should sit at the table with Afghan government to build a lasting peace and put an end to the ongoing violence in the country.  

Deputy spokesman of Afghan Prime Minister Ashraf Ghani said the draft accord is waiting to be approved by the president.  

A four-nation meeting held in Pakistan on Wednesday, with the attendance of representatives from the US, China and Afghanistan is aiming to revive peace talks with Taliban which has refused to call to sit at the table.

TRTWorld and agencies