Tuesday 25 June 2013 - 09:59

‘Afghan govt. should lead peace talks’

Story Code : 276631
‘Afghan govt. should lead peace talks’
Karzai made the remakes during his talks with US Special Representative to Afghanistan and Pakistan James Dobbins in the Afghan capital, Kabul on Monday.
“The peace process should not be used as a political toll by foreigners for their own interests,” Karzai told the US envoy.
Dobbins arrived in Kabul on Monday to ease recent tensions over the opening of a Taliban political office in Qatar.
The tension between Washington and Kabul broke out on June 18, when the Taliban militant group opened its new political office in Doha under the name of “the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan.”
Dobbins said the US was "outraged" at how the Taliban opened the office.
    "We contacted the government of Qatar, we protested and we asked them to take corrective measures and they took them," Dobbins told reporters in Kabul.
"We were outraged ourselves because it was inconsistent with the assurances we had been given and the assurances we had given... We thought the Afghan reaction was both entirely predictable and entirely justified.
"The use of the Islamic Emirate title... (and) the symbols, signs and nomenclature were incompatible with what had been understood to be the arrangement."
Before arriving in Kabul, Dobbins was in the Qatari capital with US Secretary of State John Kerry.
The Afghan government has reacted angrily to the opening of the office, which is backed by the United States.
Kabul has also suspended talks with Washington on a proposed security agreement.
Afghanistan says it wants to lead any talks with militants and that the opening of Taliban’s office in Qatar contradicts earlier US security guarantees.
The Afghan government on Sunday demanded a full explanation as to how the US and Qatar allowed the Taliban to raise its flag over its office in Doha.
Senior Afghan officials in Kabul say the Taliban militants will be able to use the office to raise funds for their campaign in Afghanistan.
The Taliban was removed from power in Afghanistan following the invasion of the country by the United States and its allies in 2001, which was carried out as part of Washington’s so-called war on terror.