‘Kabul government targeted by the Taliban’

Taliban militants on Tuesday launched a coordinated attack on a government security agency in the Afghan capital, killing scores of people. Kabul-based Afghanistan expert Alexey Yusupov talks to DW about the assault.

Afghanistan Explosion in Kabul

DW: How is the situation on the ground following the attack?

Alexey Yusupov: Today’s assault was definitely the biggest and most devastating attack in the capital Kabul since August last year, when a truck bomb exploded in Shah Shaheed, a rundown residential neighborhood not far from the city center. If reports about the numbers of dead and injured are confirmed to be accurate, then it would perhaps be the biggest attack in the capital in the last 15 years. Continue reading


Treffen in Kabul sondiert Friedensgespräche

Zum vierten Mal treffen sich Vertreter Pakistans, Afghanistans, der USA und Chinas, diesmal in Kabul, um nach Wegen zu suchen, die Taliban zu Friedensgesprächen zu bewegen. Aber noch schwören die wenigsten der Gewalt ab.

Taliban in Afghanistan (Foto: Getty Images)

Bei seiner Rede am Nationalfeiertag und zum Gedenken an den Abzug der sowjetischen Truppen am 14. Februar hatte Präsident Ashraf Ghani die islamistischen Taliban einmal mehr dazu aufgerufen, sich den Friedensbemühungen anzuschließen. “Ein weiteres Mal wende ich mich an die Taliban mit der Forderung, sie mögen in Gottes Namen, um des Volkes Willen und die Bemühungen der Mujaheddin-Führer respektierend, den Ruf des Friedens bejahen”, so Ashraf Ghani, der noch nicht müde geworden ist, an eine politische Lösung zu glauben. Continue reading

Can the high-level talks lead to peace in Afghanistan?

Masood Saifullah, Waslat Hasrat-Nazimi

Afghan officials and Taliban representatives have met in Islamabad for talks. But experts say such negotiations can only lead to peace if those involved are recognized by the Taliban leadership.

Taliban Kämpfer Symbolbild

An Afghan government delegation met with Taliban representatives on Tuesday, July 8, in Pakistan following a series of informal talks between the two warring sides in various countries. The meeting, held at Muree – a hilly resort near Pakistani capital, Islamabad – is not an official start of peace negotiations but it is the first time such an encounter has been confirmed by the Afghan, Pakistani and US governments. Continue reading

Secret Taliban peace talks in China criticized

Once again, secret talks with Taliban representatives are said to have taken place – this time in China. Given the string of deadly attacks in their country, Afghans have reacted to the alleged meeting with skepticism.

Former Taliban fighters are photographed holding weapons before they hand them over as part of a government peace and reconciliation process at a ceremony in Jalalabad on February 8, 2015
(Photo: Noorullah Shirzada/AFP/Getty Images)

According to some Afghan and Western media outlets, an Afghan peace delegation and former officials of the Taliban regime held secret talks last week in the northwestern Chinese city of Urumqi. The Afghan delegation was reportedly headed by Masoom Stanekzai, secretary of the Afghan government’s High Peace Council, who has also been nominated as defense minister by President Ashraf Ghani.

Talks about talks

According to some reports, three representatives of the Taliban – Mullah Abdul Jalil, Mullah Abdul Razaq and Mullah Hassan Rahmani – participated in the negotiations. Also present were officials of Pakistan’s spy agency, the Inter-Services Intelligence’s (ISI), who reportedly facilitated the talks. Continue reading

Kritik an Geheimgesprächen mit Taliban

Wieder einmal sollen Geheimgespräche mit Taliban-Vertretern stattgefunden haben, diesmal in China. Angesichts der mörderischen Anschlagsserien reagieren die Afghanen mit Skepsis oder Verbitterung.

(Symbolbild) Kämpfer von Taliban. (Foto: AFP)

Eine afghanische Delegation des Hohen Friedensrats und ehemalige Funktionäre des Taliban-Regimes, das 2001 gestürzt worden war, sollen laut afghanischen und westlichen Medienberichten letzte Woche zu geheimen Verhandlungen nach Urumqi im Nordwesten Chinas gereist sein. Geleitet wurde die afghanische Delegation von Masoom Stanekzai, Sekretär des Hohen Friedensrates. Kurz darauf wurde er von Präsident Mohammad Ashraf Ghani zum Verteidigungsminister nominiert. Sollte das afghanische Parlament zustimmen, wird er diesen Posten übernehmen. Bei den Friedensgesprächen gilt er als Chefunterhändler der afghanischen Regierung. Continue reading