Afghanistan and Central Asian Association (ACAA), a British charity supporting the welfare and integration of Afghan refugees in the U.K. discussed the ongoing Afghan peace talks in London on Monday.
“These peace talks need to be more inclusive of the Afghan civil society. Through the skills and knowledge it has acquired, the Afghan diaspora has an important role to play in ensuring a more open process”, Dr. Nooralhaq Nasimi, Founder and Director of the ACAA said.
Baroness D’Souza member of the House of Lords and former Lord Speaker stressed that any solution to the ongoing conflict should be decided by Afghans themselves. She continued by underscoring how food aid had slashed local food prices, pushing farmers towards opium poppy production and swelling the ranks of the Taliban.
Murad Qureshi, Chairman of the Stop the War Coalition called for a swift withdrawal of international forces from Afghanistan.
Reacting to the crash of a U.S. military aircraft, Mr. Qureshi argued such developments could stall, if not reverse, the recent progress in the Doha peace talks.
Lynne O’Donnell, an award-winning journalist and former Bureau Chief of The Associated Press discussed how the Afghan media had blossomed since 2001, whilst also emphasizing how an agreement with the Taliban could harm freedom of the press in Afghanistan.
This comes as the one-year-old long peace negotiations between the Taliban and the United States have not yet ended in order to enter into the second phase which is the intra-Afghan talks where the Afghanistan leaders and government get involved in talks.
US peace envoy Zalmay Khalilzad traveled to Brussels on Tuesday to meet the NATO leaders and the US allies.
The NATO chief, Jens Stoltenberg said in a tweet that NATO will remain committed to supporting Afghanistan & creating the conditions for peace.