President Ghani urges Afghanistan’s international friends to join a united front against states support terrorists

GhaniKABUL: President Ashraf Ghani has urged Afghanistan’s international friends to adopt a united front against countries supporting and equipping terrorists.

In a joint press conference with visiting Indonesian counterparty Joko Widodo, Ghani lambasted the Taliban for claiming barbaric incidents of violence in the country and asked the global community to put pressure on supporters of terrorism for ending the decades old conflict in Afghanistan.

The Indonesian President arrived in Kabul on official visit earlier in the day — the first visit by an Indonesian head of state to Afghanistan in 60 years.

Second Vice President Sarwar Danish received the dignitary at around 12:30pm at the Hamid Karzai International Airport in Kabul.

President Ghani said Indonesia was one of the populous Muslim countries in the world, a greater democracy and its role in the Muslim ummah had been exemplary and admirable.

“You’re the symbol of unity in a country with people from different ethnic groups and religions; you are the symbol of moderation in everything and this is important for us,” Ghani said, while referring to the Indonesian president.

Ghani said the Taliban claimed responsibility for the deadliest attack in Kabul merely to please their masters who had been suffering from global isolation.

He added the Taliban denied responsibility for attacks in which death tolls were high.

“Do you know why they claimed responsibility for the attack? In order to pave the way for their master to come out of global isolation and they use the opportunity for their own interest,” the president said.

The president was talking after several Afghan soldiers were killed and wounded in an attack in their academy in Kabul on Monday, two days after a suicide car bombing killed 103 people and wounded hundreds more.

He asked how could the Taliban, who proved they never disobeyed the orders of their masters, would defend the interest of Afghanistan?

He said explosions in public places showed the enemy did not want to let the people live in peaceful environment and refused to give this right to the people.

The president hoped Afghanistan would be able to get benefit of Indonesia experiences and advises regarding mutual interests, particularly about ulema consensus in fighting against extremism.

The president said ulema views from both the countries and other countries needed to be united against extremism and ulema should defend Islamic justice, human rights and Muslims without their fitwas being affected by politics or a specific geography.

“Ulema should stand against those who define Halal and Haram for themselves differently for others or they justify killings and bloodshed”, Ghani said.

Ghani asked the Afghans that it was a high time for them ignore their small interests, avoid disunity and divisions and support reforms in the government and their security forces.

He appreciated Afghan forces sacrifices and said: “Reforms would be not delayed in the security sector, particularly in the Ministry of Interior and in the National Directorate of Security (NDS), we are in a landmark phase, we have no choice but to bring reforms and make serious decisions.”

For his part Indonesian president Joko Widodo termed recent terror attacks in Afghanistan as “tragic” and shared his condolences with the Afghan people.

He said his trip to Afghanistan would be effective in extending cooperation and improving relations between the two countries and talked about many issues such as the peace process with the Afghan president.

Widodo said Indonesia would cooperate with Afghanistan in ensuring peace.

He stressed on strengthening his country’s cooperation with Afghanistan in many areas and said: “We support Afghanistan in many fields so this country reaches a stable peace.”

This is the first trip of an Indonesian president to Afghanistan in the past six decades, he said, adding his country would build an Islamic center in Afghanistan and support this country in economic and infrastructure sectors.

By Azizullah Hamdard

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