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Afghan President Ghani slams Taliban's remarks on dissolving army

File photo of Afghan President Ashraf Ghani. Photograph:( Reuters )

ANI Kabul, Afghanistan Feb 03, 2019, 08.38 PM (IST)

Afghan President Ashraf Ghani lashed out at the Taliban on Sunday saying, "those who are forcefully bringing others to negotiate should not say that the army is not required to reinstate peace in the country".

“Those who are forcefully bringing others to negotiate must not talk about dissolving our “lions” (army); if they are so brave, then they must come and fight on the battlefield instead of carrying out suicide (attacks) and explosions,” Ghani said.

Tolo News quoted Ghani as saying in the Afghan capital, during an event to honour commandos, after they were freed last week from a Taliban prison.  

The remarks by the Afghan President came after senior Taliban leader Sher Mohammad Abbas Stanikzai, in a video stated that after the United States pulls out half of its armed forces from Afghanistan, there would be no need for an army to stabilise peace in the region.

The video was released by the Taliban representative post the recent Doha talks over Afghan peace reconciliation took place between officials from the United States and the Taliban.

In response to the video, President Ghani said: ''A peace that our security and defence forces do not guarantee is not acceptable to us.''

''Our security and defence forces are not one-day forces, one year and one decade and a generation, but forces that fight for hundreds of generations,” Ghani added.

On Saturday, during an interview with CNN President Ghani’s special envoy Umer Daudzai said that the rapid withdrawal of US troops from the country would only create a "vacuum and increase bloodshed".   

Daudzai informed CNN that while the peace talks in Qatar have brought "clarity", neither side has fully agreed to anything.

In the latest bid, Russia will be hosting peace talks in its capital city on Tuesday, February 5, amid reports that the Taliban have refused to meet with Afghan government representatives at the meet.

Story highlights

The remarks by the Afghan President came after senior Taliban leader Sher Mohammad Abbas Stanikzai, in a video stated that after the United States pulls out half of its armed forces from Afghanistan, there would be no need for an army to stabilise peace in the region.