Hezb-i-Islami Afghanistan (HIA) leader Gulbadin Hekmatyar on Friday once again called on the Taliban to respond positively to people’s demand for peace so the Afghans were able to resolve their problems themselves.
Referring to the war in Afghanistan, Hekmatyar said: “We hate those who insist on continuing the war in Afghanistan – the war which sacrifices only Afghans and the war that is being justified and financed from abroad.”
The former jihadi leader, who addressed thousands of his supporters at the Ghazi football stadium in Kabul, recalled the sacrifices and patriotism of the Afghans against the former Soviet Union’s invasion of Afghanistan.
Thousands of HIA supporters coming from Kabul and nearby provinces thronged the football stadium to see and listen to Hekmatyar, who emerged from decades of hiding last week in eastern Laghman province.
Hekmatyar, a former prime minister, said the HIA supporters were kept in Guantanamo Bay detention camp, Bagam jail, Pul-i-Charkhi jail and other notorious prisons, but they did not bow to the aggression and continued their resistance.
The HIA leader once gain extended a hand of brotherhood to all the Afghans, including the Taliban, and said those wanted peace were his brothers. “We are ready to work with everyone for reaching the sacred goal of peace.”
Hekmatyar announced pardoning those who had killed HIA fighters and said he wanted to bury the past.
He said the Afghans should realize the fact that there were good and bad people in every party and group. The Afghan war was directed from outside and the victims were Afghans, he said.
“We extend a hand of brotherhood to the Jamiat-i-Islami and we also call the Taliban as brothers.”
Hekmatyar said the ongoing conflict in Afghanistan was a result of disunity and not respecting national values.
Hekmatyar reiterated his opposition to reaching power by force, saying the nation should select their leader through election.
“No one has a justification for the stay of foreign forces here, I ask the Taliban to come and end this war. Let’s establish an Islamic government together.”
Hekmatyar said since entering peace talks with the government until now many senior HIA workers were either killed or attempt made on their lives.
He said the Taliban had proudly accepted responsibility for some of the coward attacks, but no one claimed credit for similar acts in the northern provinces.