54 militants lay down arms, join peace process

54 Taliban militants including four of their commanders have laid down arms and joined peace process in eastern Nangarhar province of Afghanistan.

“These individuals were involved in terror activities. After they discovered the facts with the efforts of the Afghan intelligence agency, they joined peace process,” said Ataullah Khogyani, provincial governor spokesman.

According to Khogyani, the group has handed over around 54 light and heavy weapons as well.

These individuals were involved in anti-government activities in Bati-Kot, Achin, Rodat, Momand Dara and Khogyani districts, the official added.

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Taliban leader Mawlavi Nik Mohammad’s 10 insurgents join peace process

At least ten insurgents belonging to the Taliban group leader Mawlavi Nik Mohammad joined peace process in eastern Nangarhar province of Afghanistan.

The provincial government media office in a statement said the militants led by Ismail alias Fawad joined the peace process due to the ongoing peace efforts of the provincial National Directorate of Security.

The statement further added that the militants joined peace process in Khogyani district and also handed over some weapons and ammunition to the local authorities.
The weapons handed over to the authorities include five Ak-47 assault rifles, two pistols, a rocket launcher, six hand grenades, and one communication device set.

The militants were previously active in Khogyani district where they were conducting destructive activities under the leadership of the Taliban leader Mawlavi Nik Mohammad, the statement added.

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Hekmatyar offers all-out support to Taliban if the group opts peace talks

The leader of Hezb-e-Islami Gulbuddin Hekmatyar has offered an all-out support to Taliban if the group opts to participate in peace talks with the Afghan government.

Hekmatyar made the offer during his visit to southeastern Paktia and Khost provinces where he met with supporters of his party during his three-day stay.

He said the ongoing conflict has no winner and will burn the Afghan nation since this is a conflict among the Afghan people and only the nation will suffer.

Calling on Taliban to join peace process, Hekmatyar said Hezb-e-Islami is prepared for an all-out support if the group agrees to start peace talks with the Afghan governmet.

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‘Father of Taliban’ Sami-ul-Haq offers conditional support to Afghan peace process

The leader of Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam Sami (JUI-S) Maulana Sami-ul-Haq has offered a conditional support for the peace process in Afghanistan.

According to a statement released by Maula Sami’s office, the leader of the party has said he is prepared to support the Afghan peace process but the foreign forces must leave the country first.

He has reportedly made the remarks during a meeting with the Afghan ambassador to Pakistan.
The statement further added that the Afghan ambassador met with Maulana Sami to play his part in encouraging the Afghan Taliban to peace talks, considering his influential role.

In the meantime, Maulana Sami has called on the government of Pakistan to reconsider its policies in Afghanistan, claiming that India is taking advantage from the ongoing situation in the region.

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Key Taliban Commander Joins Peace Process In Badakhshan

One of the Taliban’s military commanders in Badakhshan, Qari Mahrab, along with his 25 fighters, has joined the peace process.

Maharb said he was the intelligence commander for both local and foreign terrorists in Badakhshan.

According to him, 11 years ago he received military and religious training at terrorist centers in Pakistan. He then started carrying out anti-government and insurgency activities along with fellow fighters in Wardoj district of Badakhshan.

“Eleven years ago I got lessons in Pakistan and for seven years I have been with Taliban and I was on all Taliban’s battle frontlines,” Maharab said.

He said he played a key role in the collapse of many parts of Badakhshan, especially in the collapse of Yamgan and Wardoj districts.

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Political Parties Cautiously Welcome Hekmatyar Deal

After months of tough negotiations, the Afghan government and Hizb-e-Islami finally signed a draft peace accord in Kabul on Wednesday – a move that has been cautiously welcomed by Afghan political parties.

Led by former Jihadi commander Gulbuddin Hekmatyar, Hizb-e-Islami is the second largest militant group after the Taliban that has been active in armed struggles against the Afghan government and its foreign partners.

While analysts believe that Hekmatyar’s return to peace could be a template to ending the war with the Taliban, Afghan political parties however have asked government to take national interests into consideration while forging peace with the militant group and that the nation’s gains and interests should not be undermined in the peace negotiation process.

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Former Daesh Fighters Claim Pakistan Funded Them

A 10-member group of Daesh fighters that lay down their arms and joined the peace process on Wednesday claimed they were financed and equipped by Pakistani military and also trained in Pakistan.

They said that Pakistani military provides light and heavy weapons to Daesh fighters in Afghanistan.

“Pakistani military gave us weapons and used to tell us that Afghan forces are infidels and you must kill them,” said Zaitoon, a former Daesh fighter that joined the peace process.

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