Constitutional changes may come but not to please Taliban

Monitoring Desk

KABUL: Second vice-president Sarwar Danish on Friday said every law needed a relook in order to bring about reforms, but if changes were to be brought to the Afghanistan’s constitution, they would come from a legal perspective, not to please the Taliban.

Addressing a gathering marking the 30th anniversary of the former Soviet Union troops’ withdrawal from Afghanistan in Kabul, Danish said the Afghanistan’s jihad against the Soviets was a pride for all Afghans who bravely defeated the invaders.

Chief Executive Officer Abdullah Abdullah, Hezb-i-Islami Afghanistan leader Abdul Hadi Arghandiwal, the chief justice and other high ranking government officials were in attendance.

Addressing the gathering, Sarwar Danish said the Afghans had been successful and victorious until they were united, but failed after losing unity because it was the Afghans’ unity that defeated the Soviets forces.

What happened after the Soviet forces’ withdrawal from Afghanistan was the outcome of selfishness and prejudice for others, but it did not mean putting a question mark on the value and respect for jihad, he said. “Today we are facing the same situation, what we learned since the jihad and after until today, we should concentrate on our national and political unity and avoid mistakes.”

Danish said Afghanistan made many achievements during the past 18 years from conveying the loya jirga to approve the constitution to the reestablishment of the three pillars of state — the executive, legislature and the judiciary — and raising security and defense forces.

The vice president said they supported the intensified efforts for peace in Afghanistan but all Afghans wanted a lasting and dignified peace.

“There are some concerns, not about the coming of peace but other things and the first among them is the system and formation of government, any peace deal should not be drafted in a way that forces a retreat tomorrow, takes us back to the point zero.”

He rejected the idea of an interim government and asked the Taliban to show which article of the Afghanistan’s constitution was in conflict with Islam.

He said every law needed changes for improvement but if changes were to be brought to the Constitution, they should come from a legal perspective instead of granting leverage to the Taliban.

Danish said no peace bid could produce desired results if the Afghan government was missing from it, therefore it was essential to include the past 18 years achievements, human and women’s rights in the peace talks.

About draft amendments to the electoral law the president signed recently, Danish said the changes had been consulted with all presidential candidates, political parties, civil society institutes and foreign countries.

“We acknowledge that the amendments should not have come at this particular time, but it was done so avoid a possible crisis in the upcoming election,” Danish said.

HIA leader Arghandiwal said the Afghan jihad not only gifted freedom to Afghanistan but to several central Asian countries. (Pajhwok)