Iran trashes US role in Afghan peace process

Says only intra-Afghan dialogue can restore peace in Afghanistan

By: News Desk
Published: 05:30 PM, 1 Mar, 2020
Iran trashes US role in Afghan peace process
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Iran on Sunday challenged the United States with international law over signing accord with Taliban on future of Afghanistan.

Iran’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs said on Sunday that the United States has no legal position to decide the fate of Afghanistan, reported IRNA.

The Foreign Ministry said in a statement that the Islamic Republic of Iran welcomes any efforts that help peace in Afghanistan.

The statement was issued in reaction to the agreement reached by the US and the Taliban after 11 days of negotiations.

The statement said that Iran believes “lasting peace will be established in Afghanistan only through intra-Afghan talks attended by the country’s political groups, including the Taliban, taking into account the considerations of Afghanistan’s neighbouring countries.”

Welcoming “any development” that would help peace and stability in Afghanistan and supports “any Afghan-led efforts” in that regard, it said, “Iran believes the presence of foreign forces in Afghanistan is illegal and is one of the key contributors to war and insecurity in the country.”

“The pullout of these forces is a prelude to achieving peace and security in Afghanistan, and any move that sets the stage for the withdrawal of these troops will contribute to the establishment of peace in that country.”

Regarding the US moves as “an effort to legitimise the presence of its troops in Afghanistan,” the statement said that Iran is opposed to such moves. “The US has no legal position to sign a peace deal or to decide the future situation of Afghanistan.”

“We believe the United Nations enjoys good potential to facilitate intra-Afghan negotiations as well as to monitor and guarantee the implementation of the agreements reached.”

The statement said that Iran respects the territorial sovereignty and integrity of Afghanistan, and in line with its national security strategy, and “stands ready to offer any help to establish peace, stability and security in Afghanistan.”

“We hope a government will take office in Afghanistan that will establish cordial and brotherly relations with its neighbours and will be able to uproot terrorism.”

The agreement between Taliban and the US was signed on Saturday by US Special Representative for Afghanistan Reconciliation Zalmy Khalilzad and Taliban’s representative Abdul Ghani Baradar in the presence of representatives from 30 countries.

After the agreement was signed, Baradar thanked Pakistan, Iran, China, Russia, Uzbekistan, Indonesia, and Norway for helping the peace process.