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Beijing to mediate between Kabul, Islamabad: President Ghani

ghani preKABUL: President Ashraf Ghani says China would mediate between Afghanistan and Pakistan for the first time, with the Chinese foreign minister set to visit Kabul soon.

Ghani’s office said in a statement on Tuesday the president made the statement during a meeting with women activists from different organisations.

The president equated the May 31 bombing in Kabul to the 9/11 incident in the US. Washington managed to put up a united front after 9/11, he added.

Afghanistan, by organizing the Kabul Process conference, also forged global consensus but the enemy being clever tried to create internal problems for the government.

Referring to the latest Shanghai Cooperation Oragnisation (SCO) summit and his meetings with global leaders, the president said China had evinced an interest in mediating between Kabul and Islamabad.

For this purpose, the president said, the Chinese foreign minister would visit Kabul soon. “Whenever there is a positive change or an achievement is in the pipeline, the government comes under pressure in different ways.”

He stressed no power would be able to deflect the government’s attention from future programmes. His administration would deal with crises intelligently, he promised.

Ghani asked civil society activists to raise their vice against violations of the law by powerful people and not allow the jungle law to prevail.

The president stressed a national debate on drastic reforms in security institutions. The reforms could be stretched to the provinces, he indicated, calling for revamping the interior ministry.

During the meeting, Ghani heard suggestions from women activists about the security situation, particularly on the recent incidents, road blockades by protestors and arbitrary actions in Kabul.

Zahra Wali Rahmani, Orzala Ashraf, Humaira Saqib and Humaira Oryakhel spoke at the meeting and thanked the president for hearing their views on important national issues and decisions.

 Zahra Wali Rahmani expressed condolences over the May 31 incident in Kabul and said Afghanistan’s enemy, having faced strong resistance from the security forces, had resorted to waging a psychological war.

She urged the government and the people to stand united in the psychological war, which she termed more dangerous than physical war, because it fuelled distrust and disillusion.

Orzala Ashraf said psychological effects of the May 31 attack were grim and far-reaching. She complained road blockades by protestors had deprived Kabul citizens of their right to free movement.

Another woman activist, Humaira Saqib, said that the government was responsible for the protection of people. She asked the authorities concerned to identify the perpetrators of recent attacks and bring them to justice.

The government should rely on civil society leaders instead of powerful individuals and tribal opportunists in efforts to unite different communities and prevent divisions, she suggested.

Humaira Oryakhel called tribal and regional discrimination, conflict and administrative corruption the root of all problems, saying the government should accelerate efforts for peace.

After hearing the women activists’ suggestions, the president said he had met different groups of people and sought suggestions from them on how to end the ongoing conflict.

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