Russia to host meeting on Afghanistan peace process

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KABUL (TCA) — Moscow will host the International Contact Group’s meeting on October 11, where representative from more than 50 countries and international organizations will discuss the Afghanistan peace process and peace talks with the Taliban, Russia’s foreign ministry has said.

In response to a question about the meeting and Russia’s role in Afghanistan’s peace process, the United Nations Special Representative for Afghanistan, Tadamichi Yamamoto, said that Russia could play a vital role in supporting peace efforts in the region, TOLOnews agency reported.

He made the remarks at the third Senior Officials Meeting in Kabul on October 6.

“Russia is a very important partner and player in efforts to peace internationally. And we certainly look to Russia to play very constructive role. They can play constructive role and they have the intention to play constructive role. And we hope that the efforts shall be very fruitful to the international effort,” said Yamamoto.

Moscow has hosted other meetings on Afghanistan’s peace process, but none of those meetings could bring the Taliban to the negotiation table.

Asked if the October 11 meeting will bring the Taliban to the negotiation table, Afghan political affairs analyst Sayed Ahmad Ahmadi said he hoped that it will be a positive step towards peace. “If the Afghans lead the peace process, we will reach a result; otherwise, I am not more hopeful about the (Moscow) meeting,” he added.

Meanwhile, Afghan Finance Minister Eklil Hakimi said at the Senior Officials Meeting that Kabul will host a big meeting on the Afghan peace process within the next three months.

Hakimi said the meeting will be attended by representatives of the international community, Afghan officials and political figures to design a roadmap for the peace talks and to take practical steps in talking with the Taliban.

The first International Contact Group (ICG) meeting was held in Jeddah in February to discuss the political, security, and economic situation in Afghanistan. The meeting was hosted by the Organization for Islamic Cooperation (OIC) and co-chaired by Ambassador Sabine Sparwasser, German Special Representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan, and Hekmat Khalil Karzai, Deputy Foreign Minister of Afghanistan. Over 50 ICG member states and multilateral organizations participated.

Sergey Kwan

TCA