Afghanistan’s Hekmatyar Urges Negotiators to Settle on Joint Peace Plan

Calls for interim government, full US withdrawal

Hezb-e Islami leader and former Afghan premier Gulbuddin Hekmatyar has limited political sway these days, but has regularly been brought into efforts at rapprochement in Afghanistan, and is now discussing his position on the ongoing US-Taliban peace process.

Hekmatyar says his party supports the pursuit of the peace process, and says several factions are pushing different sets of plans for post-war Afghanistan. He said he believes ultimately they will need to come together and unify in a single Afghan plan.

His plan appears to resemble the recently proposed US strategy, in that it would see an interim government, though he also calls for the US to make good on a promised pullout from the existing peace deal.

Hekmatyar suggested that President Ghani attend the upcoming Turkish conference, and while there were pushes for Mullah Akhundzada to also take part, he said there are reportedly “difficulties” in him doing so.

With so many different positions, it’s hard to imagine unity being quick, though the Turkey conference aims to find some sort of consensus that will allow them to move forward on the peace process.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is senior editor of Antiwar.com.