The Afghan government is not ready to divulge the details of recent secret talks with the Taliban in Qatar, a source close to the National Security Council (NSC) said on Monday.
Reports indicate that a team of Taliban peace negotiators held secret peace talks with representatives of the Afghan government in Doha, Qatar last week.
According to reports published in western media, head of Afghanistan’s spy agency – the National Directorate of Security (NDS), Mohammad Masoom Stanekzai and the National Security Advisor Mohammad Hanif Atmar led the government delegation in the secret talks with the Taliban.
But the talks in Qatar followed widespread reaction among Afghan political elites and members of the public.
On Sunday, Chief Executive Abdullah Abdullah said he was not informed about the details of the peace talks between the two sides in Qatar, a statement analysts interpret as a sign of mistrust and tension between the two leaders.
“The lack of trust between the president and the chief executive is concerning. They must work together for national unity,” said Ainuddin Bahaduri, secretary general of Afghanistan’s Lawyers Union.
“In certain cases, details of the primary negotiations cannot be made public,” said MP Sayed Ali Kazimi.
“They (government leaders) must put their disputes aside and should forge consensus on some important national issues, including the peace process,” said Munawar Shah Bahaduri, another MP.
There are reports that the High Peace Council (HPC) was also unaware of the talks in Qatar.
However, a member of the peace facilitating body on Monday said the peace talks with the Taliban will be on track as the group has realized the fact that war is not the resolute solution to the crisis.
“Situations and ground realities have developed in a manner that indicate they (Taliban) are tired of the war and a belief has emerged that war is not the solution,” HPC member Mohammad Ismail Qasimyar said.
Reports surfaced in the media earlier this week that a three member Taliban delegation under Mawlawi Shahabuddin Delawar, Mullah Jan Mohammad and Mullah Salam Hanafi travelled to Pakistan to discuss the peace process with the Afghan government.
Afghan ambassador to Pakistan Omar Zakhelwal has confirmed the meeting between Taliban and the Pakistani officials.