Tehran Ready to Help Resolve Afghan Crisis

Tehran Ready to Help Resolve Afghan Crisis
Tehran Ready to Help Resolve Afghan Crisis

Iran’s top diplomat on Wednesday told representatives of the Afghan government and the Taliban that Iran is prepared to help the war-ravaged country settle conflicts and establish peace and stability.
In a meeting hosted by Tehran, Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said the return of political factions to the negotiating table was the best move they could possibly make, IRNA reported.
“Today, the Afghan people and political leaders need to make difficult decisions for the future of their country,” the senior diplomat added.
Iran has been negotiating with the Taliban in the past few years to help Afghanistan put an end to internal conflicts and form an all-inclusive government.
Zarif noted, “Iran is ready to advance talks between existing groups to resolve the current conflicts and crises in the country.”
Representative of Afghanistan’s largest militant group arrived in Tehran on an official invitation by the Iranian government, according to a tweet by the group’s spokesman, Mohammad Naeem Wardak.
The Taliban delegation was led by Sher Mohammad Abbas Stanikzai, head of Taliban’s political office in Qatar’s Doha, Wardak said on Twitter.
Former vice president Yunus Qanuni represented the western-backed government in Kabul during the intra-Afghan talks.



US Defeat

At the start of the talks, Zarif pointed to the defeat of the US-led coalition in Afghanistan after 20 years of waging war.
“The US’ more than two decades of presence has brought about massive destruction,” the minister said. Last week, American forces vacated the Bagram Air Base, putting an end to the US’ longest war in history.
The airfield was the American troops’ main military base in Afghanistan. The withdrawal is part of a plan to pull out all foreign forces from the country by Sept. 11, the anniversary of al-Qaeda’s attack on US soil in 2001.
Taliban has been rapidly gaining territories since the US began withdrawing from the war-ravaged country back in May, without achieving its objective of eradicating Taliban insurgents.
Since then, the ongoing Taliban’s offensive against government forces has led to the capture of more than 100 district centers.
Four delegations, representing the Afghan government, the parliament, the Taliban group and key figures who support the republic system, are currently holding talks in Tehran to discuss ways of achieving lasting peace.
Iran shares a 900-km border with Afghanistan, making the stability of the neighboring country vital to its national interests.

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