A 3-days traditional grand assembly called Loya Jirga in Afghanistan was held on the 7-9 August in capital Kabul with the main agenda to discuss the release of the remaining 400 Taliban prisoners.
The assembly chaired by Dr. Abdullah Abdullah kicked off on Friday morning and ended up Saturday afternoon, passing a formal declaration.
The major recommendations of the assembly are:
- Jirga aimed to remove obstacles to begin peace negotiations, stop the bloodshed and obeying expediency and general welfare, it confirms the release of 400 Taliban prisoners.
- Jirga calls for an immediate and lasting ceasefire in the country and requires the international community especially the United States of America in this matter to stay committed to their promises.
- Demands from the international community to prevent the intervention of all those countries that are direct or indirectly involved in the instability or are supporting terrorist groups.
- As peace efforts continue, members of this Loya Jirga demands government and Taliban to end armed conflicts and resolve all the disputes through dialogue. The people of Afghanistan will take a decisive decision over the side that insists on continuing violence.
- Islamic values, the role of scholars, basic government institutions, democracy and people’s achievements over the past two decades should be strengthened and maintained.
- In peace negotiations, the principle of democracy and republic, fundamental rights of the citizens especially the ethnics, religious minorities that are recorded in the second chapter of the constitution and other articles should not be harmed or damaged in any way.
- Members of peace consultative Loya Jirga emphasize that women as half body of the nation must have political and legal rights and should participate and have their roles in the entire peace process.
- Members of the advisory Loya Jirga believes that the constitution is a national assurance that should be preserved. But based on necessity, constitution modifications according to the predictive mechanism is permitted.
- The members of Loya Jirga proposed that in the formation of the national high peace reconciliation, national participation should be observed and in its structure, national figures, political leaders, religious scholars, tribal leaders, women, youth, civil society and other segments of society should be included. And for further democratizing the peace process, its activities should be extended to provinces.
- The country’s security and defense forces are the guardians of our national sovereignty and territorial integrity, they must be supported and strengthened further. At the same time, there should be a better reach to the heirs of the security institutions and victims of terrorism incidents.
- The Jirga emphasizes and suggests that the next rounds of intra-Afghan talks must be held and organized inside the country Afghanistan.
There is nothing about the ‘Human Rights’ and ‘Freedom of Speech’ in the declaration which are two major achievements of the Afghan nation for the last two decades.
Afghan political analyst and expert, Ahmad Saeedi calls the assembly’s decision ridiculous and says it is not logical at all to decide about a large number of criminals, that none of the assembly members have at least minimum information about them.
Saeedi also believes that there are 28 foreign fighters among the last 400 detainees on whom the Taliban had the most emphasis and they are going to be released soon after the President signs the decree, however, Abdullah Abdullah said the other day that there are no foreign fighters among the 400 Taliban prisoners who are going to be released after the Jirga’s approval.
The grand assembly (Loya Jirga) has also emphasized on the ‘reduction of violence’ and ‘ceasefire’ after the release of the last 400 detainees of the Taliban and as the intra-Afghan talks start, but it still remains a bold question whether the Taliban agrees to a ‘ceasefire’ during the intra-Afghan dialogue or not.
The first round of the intra-Afghan talks are to be held in Doha.