The leaders of the National Unity Government of Afghanistan officially announced the chairman and members of the High Peace Council and its secretariat in a meeting at Presidential Palace on 23 Feb, 2016. The new leadership and members of the High Peace Council include Jihadi leaders, religious scholars, political figures, tribal elders and elite women which clearly demonstrates national consensus around the peace process.
The High peace council (HPC) was established on the basis of the recommendations of the National consultative Peace Jirga held in October 2010. Since its establishment, the council has been striving to bring lasting peace and stability to the country. building national consensus, mobilizing people, enlisting religious scholars’ support, providing reintegration and demobilization opportunities, facilitating the return of a large number of armed oppositions to normal life, participating and facilitating direct and indirect, formal and informal negotiations, attending regional and international peace conferences to discuss the Afghan peace process, reflecting on the desire of Afghan people and government for peace and organizing national and international Islamic Ulema conferences are the main achievements of the High Peace Council.
While engaged and providing ground for peace and reconciliation, the first chairman of the High peace council, Professor Brahanudin Rabani (Martyr of Peace), was assassinated by the enemies of peace and stability in the country.
Mr. Salahudin Rabbani took over as the chairman of the High Peace Council after his father’s assassination. After three years in office, Mr. Salahudin Rabbani was appointed as the minister of foreign affairs and at the same time, the Secretary General of the High Peace council Mohammad Masoom Stanekzai was nominated as the minister of defense by the National Unity Government. Since then, the High peace Council and its Secretariat have been functioning normally under the leadership of the deputies.
Peace is one of the major priorities of the Afghan government, and there is no doubt that the government of Afghanistan is firmly committed to reach peace through political settlement. Recent efforts of the National Unity government at the national, regional and international levels have generated a momentum and resulted in creating the Quadrilateral Coordination Group (QCG). Afghanistan, Pakistan, United States and China are represented in this mechanism which is a clear indication of regional and international consensus for the support of the Afghan peace process. It is expected that these efforts will lead to direct peace talks between the Afghan Government and armed opposition groups.
As the High Peace Council is leading peace and negotiation process, appointing new leadership at this critical moment for the council indicates the commitment of the Government for restoring durable, fair and dignified peace to the country. With this appointment, the HPC’s efforts will be accelerated and will lead to direct talks.
The High Peace Council and its newly appointed leadership under the Chairmanship of Sayed Ahmad Gailani, the Jihadi and spiritual leader, once again call upon the armed opposition groups to renounce violence and to enter into direct talks with the Afghan Government and to positively respond to the peaceful desire of the Afghan people. The armed opposition groups should join the political process of the country through which they can achieve their political goals and take part in the reconstruction of the country along with other Afghans.
The High Peace Council