Iran’s top security official has underlined the need for the formation of an inclusive government in Afghanistan, expressing concern about foreign intervention and the use of military force in the South Asian country.
In a post on his Twitter account on Wednesday, Secretary of Supreme National Security Council (SNSC) Ali Shamkhani said, “Afghanistan’s first priority is stability and peace.”
“Ignoring the necessity for the establishment of an inclusive government, foreign intervention and the use of military means instead of dialog to meet the demands of ethnicities and social groups are the main concerns of the friends of the Afghan people,” he added.
The Taliban announced an interim government for Afghanistan on Tuesday, weeks after it took control of the country amid swift advances on the ground, which many attribute to a hasty withdrawal of US-led foreign forces.
The 33-member cabinet is dominated by members of the Taliban’s old guard.
Also on Wednesday, Iranian and Pakistani ambassadors to Kabul Bahadar Aminian and Mansoor Ahmad Khan met and stressed the need to continue efforts for peace and stability in Afghanistan.
On Tuesday, Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian and Afghanistan’s former president Hamid Karzai discussed the latest developments in the conflict-ridden state.
In a telephone conversation, Amir-Abdollahian emphasized that the Islamic Republic’s principled policy is based on dialog among all groups aimed at forming an inclusive government in Afghanistan, which represents the ethnic and demographic composition of the country.
“Afghanistan can only achieve lasting peace in this way,” he added. “The Islamic Republic of Iran wants an Afghanistan free of war and terrorism.”
He also said that Iran will maintain trade and keep its borders with Afghanistan open.
“The United States has been responsible for the current chaos in Afghanistan over the past two decades. At the same time, it is the opinion and will of the Afghan people that must be realized to put an end to this situation,” the top Iranian diplomat noted.
Karzai, for his part, said the elders of Afghanistan are doing their best to pacify the situation and that the main goal is to realize the will of the Afghan people.
Appreciating Tehran’s position and help, Karzai said, “We are consulting with various groups, including the Taliban, and we ask the Islamic Republic to keep up assistance in this regard.”
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