Afghan minority leaders against reconciliation with Taliban

Leaders of Tajik, Uzbek communities are against reconciliation with Taliban.

Last Updated: Jun 27, 2010, 13:32 PM IST

New York: Afghanistan President Hamid Karzai’s efforts to strike a deal with Taliban leaders with the help of Pakistan has not only caused a concern among international community, but also caused a deep unease amongst the minority communities of the war-torn country.

The leaders of Tajik, Uzbek and Hazara communities, which make up close to half of Afghanistan’s population, are against any such reconciliation with the Taliban and have vowed to fight against any deal that involves bringing the Taliban into a power-sharing arrangement with the government, The New York Times reports.

“Karzai is giving Afghanistan back to the Taliban, and he is opening up the old schisms. If he wants to bring in the Taliban, and they begin to use force, then we will go back to civil war and Afghanistan will be split,” said Rehman Oghly, an Uzbek Member of Parliament.

The leaders of these minority communities said that Karzai and the Pakistani military and intelligence agencies were working together to re-ignite the ethnic struggle in the country, and that they have lost faith in the US and the allied forces.

“We are losing faith in our foreign friends,” Oghly added.

“Karzai has begun the ethnic war. The future is very dark,” said Mohammed Mohaqeq, a Hazara leader and a former ally of Karzai.

It’s not that the Obama administration is unknown to the threat, which it believes could further break up the tattered country.

“The Tajik-Pashtun divide that has been so strong. American and NATO leaders are trying to stifle any return to ethnic violence. It has the potential to really tear this country apart. That’s not what we are going to permit,” Chairman Joint Chiefs of Staff Admiral Mike Mullen said in an interview.