Afghan President Ghani Holding Up Peace Process

Taliban reports progress, but Ghani digs in his heels

Following up on repeated reports of progress, the Taliban are saying, and some Afghan officials are confirming, that the framework for intra-Afghan negotiations has been agreed upon. If true, this would be a major advance, and a good sign for the progress.

Unfortunately, it seems like President Ghani is resisting finalizing any of these deals, and keeps holding up progress over minor details. Right now, he’s mad about the document not calling Afghanistan “The Islamic Republic of Afghanistan.”

That’s one of several arguments that date back years. On top of all that, Ghani is very resistant of signing off on any deals in general, and that’s meant no progress at all.

Why that is is unclear. Ghani appeared irked at getting dragged into the peace process when the US and Taliban made their deal, and has been dragging his feet on everything. Since he placed his main political rival, Abdullah Abdullah, into the negotiator job, he may have a vested interest in Abdullah not succeeding, or at least not doing too well.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is news editor of Antiwar.com.