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Afghan President Rejects Possibility of Post-Peace Interim Govt

In a virtual interview given for the Atlantic Council on Thursday, President Ashraf Ghani laid out his vision for peace in Afghanistan and highlighted the importance of a ceasefire and a reduction in violence to kickstart the intra-Afghan talks.

However, Ghani rejected the possibility of the formation of an interim government in Afghanistan as a result of a potential peace deal with the Taliban.

Ghani said that he will not repeat the historic mistake committed by the Soviet-backed president Dr. Najibullah.

“Dr. Najibullah made the mistake of his life by announcing that he was going to resign...Please don't ask us to replay a film that we know where it ends." Ghani said.

On peace:

"I think now we are on course and next week we should be able to inform the world of the next steps," President Ghani told Atlantic Council’s Stephen Hadley as they discussed intra-Afghan negotiations.

"The United States and Afghanistan are completely aligned. getting to peace is my absolute priority." Said Ghani.

Political experts said that the Afghan political leaders should be prepared for any kind of compromise to help the country reach peace.

“The president should be prepared for the formation of a new government and he should be prepared to step down from his post as president,” said Jalaluddin Shinwari, a former attorney general during the Taliban regime.

“A power gap is not in the interest of the country unless there is a result in hand from the potential intra-Afghan talks,” said Ahmad Saeedi, former diplomat.

“The Afghan government and the politicians should keep in mind that there is a possibility that the opponents may not be merged within the framework of the current system. Therefore, it looks that there will some changes in the system at the end of the peace deal,” said legal expert Nasrullah Stanekzai.

Previously, sources said that the intra-Afghan talks will be convened in Doha once the release of the 5,000 Taliban prisoners has been concluded.