The Afghan peace marchers have given a deadline of three days to the Taliban to “prove their independency” by announcing ceasefire with the government that already holding a unilateral 10-day truce with the militant group.
The peace activists who arrived in the capital Kabul after spending the fasting month of Ramadan and crossing some 700 kilometers on foot from Helmand province, calling for an end to the nearly 17-year-old war in the country.
Two days earlier, the activists met with President Ashraf Ghani in Chaman-e-hozori area of Kabul, where they asked the president to agree on their four key demands that include the extension of ceasefire, a venue for peace talks, “joint system” that could preserve the interests of all citizens and withdrawal of foreign forces from Afghanistan.
However, on Thursday (June 21), the peace marchers give a three-day deadline to the Taliban to also announce ceasefire with the government.
“We had for four key demands from our President Ghani and he accepted. Now we urge the Taliban to also announce ceasefire,” said Bacha Khan Muladad, a member of the peace convoy. “If the Taliban don’t do this, we will hold sit-in tents in front of the embassies that have been suspected of supporting the Taliban.”
“Today the Taliban spokesman said that the peace convoy should hold sit-in tents in front of the Bagram [airbase] and the U.S. embassy. This is also part of our plan to hold sit-in tents in front of the embassies, but we ask the Taliban to prove that they can take decisions independently,” said Bismillah Watandost, the spokesman of the peace convoy.
According to Jamal Nasir, another member of the convoy, if the Taliban were agreed on their demands, it will discuss on setting up a venue with the Taliban so that the militant group could hold peace talks with the government.