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Abdullah calls on politicians to prioritize national interests

KABUL (TOLO news): Chief Executive Officer Abdullah Abdullah on Sunday said that politicians should value the country’s national interests before expressing their views on certain issues related to Afghanistan’s foreign policy and national interests.

“The discussion of the foreign policy of Afghanistan reflects the national interests of our country. It is not a personal or emotional issue. It is not a discussion that we forget the gains made by the people of Afghanistan or the sacrifices of the others alongside the sacrifices of the people of Afghanistan,” said Abdullah, indirectly referring to recent statement by National Security Advisor Hamdullah Mohib about US Special Representative for Afghanistan Reconciliation Zalamy Khalilzad’s efforts for Afghan peace.

During his trip to Washington DC last week, Mohib at various public forums — during an appearance at a Washington DC- based think-tank and in an interaction with reporters — described the US’s talks with the Taliban as surrender discussion.

He said that Khalilzad is keeping the “duly elected” Afghan government in dark and that in the latest round of talks in Doha, they were humiliated and made to wait in a hotel lobby. “We don’t know what’s going on. We don’t have the kind of transparency that we should have,” Mohib told reporters at a news conference on Thursday.

But, Abdullah believes that there is no a reason to be worry about the backdoor peace talks between the United States and the Taliban.

“United States has made great sacrifices and invested significant resources to help Afghanistan’s security and development. Our relations with the United States encompass all aspects of our national interests, and sure to withstand momentary sentiments of any particular politicians or officials,” he said.

Nevertheless, some Afghan political parties and elites said that recent tensions between the US and the Afghan government have had created worries among the Afghans.

“The tensions has created some worries among the people and government and it is rooted to the lack of transparency in the peace process. The negotiations are moving forward in a manner where the involved parties do not have any inforatmoin about it,” said MP Daud Kalakani.

Abdullah further said that the peace negotiations will take place at a time that all Afghan parties will come together around the negotiation table.

“Our country was invaded by terrorists. The international community was then stood alongside Afghanistan. We started our journey together till this stage. No doubt, we had some mistakes during our journey on different occasions, but today we are not in a stage to dismantle our relations with the international community,” Abdullah noted.

Later on Mohib in a twitter post warned the Afghan political leaders of their understanding of the issue.

“I would particularly caution the Afghan presidential hopefuls to exercise restraint and not end up on the wrong side of history. The country will judge you on how you treat your own, not what you do for others. Patriotism above all,” Mohib tweeted on Friday.

The US Department of State summoned Mohib following his remarks and said that the remarks were kind of attack on Khalilzad as he represents the US secretary of state in his efforts for Afghan peace.

In a tweet on Saturday evening, Khalilzad said he is working closely with NATO and other partners of the US on Afghan peace.

“Working closely with @NATO and other partners and allies has been a priority from day one. We came together. We will coordinate adjustments in our presence together. And if we leave, we will leave together. Together for peace and security for #Afghanistan and for us all,” Khalilzad tweeted.

“Sabotaging relations with the international community is not in the interests of Afghanistan. Patriotism is to pursue the national interests of the country not but not express our emotions,” Abdullah cautioned Mohib.

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