The negotiating team held a consultative meeting with the United Voice of Afghan Women for Peace Policy group

a.zia
Wed, Oct 28 2020 4:18 PM
SMP

Following the series of consultative meetings of the Negotiating Team of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan with various strata, an online meeting was held today between members of the Negotiating Team and members of the United Voice of Afghan Women for Peace Policy group by the State Ministry for Peace.
Dr. Alema, Deputy Minister of Human Rights and Civil Society at the State Ministry for Peace, said at the beginning of the meeting that the consultative group of the United Voice of Afghan Women for Peace Policy is composed of women activists from the community who have formed this group for peace. She added that the State Ministry for Peace facilitated the group's activities and the meeting was organized to connect them with the negotiating team of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan.
Sayed Sadat Mansoor Naderi, State Minister for Peace and member of the negotiating team of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan, said: "Such meetings have been held to widely involve the views and suggestions of women in peace negotiations."
The State Minister for Peace added that the Ministry acts as a link between all active structures in the negotiation process as well as the implementation of the agreement and is responsible for facilitating and ensuring the systematic relations of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan with the people, in which women have a valuable role.
Sayed Sadat Mansoor Naderi continued that the four female members of the negotiating team were able to have a comprehensive and inclusive voice for women in the process. But working for women's rights in the peace process is not their job only, and Afghan women activists must play an important role in this regard. That is why the United Voice of Afghan Women for Peace Policy shares its views with the negotiating team today.
Zohra Motahari, Deputy Chairman of the High Council for National Reconciliation, who attended the meeting, said: "It is an important point that every action and decision we make in the peace process affects the destiny of 16 million women in Afghanistan."
She emphasized that mobilizing the people in the peace process is the Islamic and national responsibility of all of us.
Fatema Gailani, a member of the negotiating team, referring to the diversity of generations, genders, ethnicities, etc. of the negotiating team, said that this diversity could have affected the unanimity, but our common aspirations for a united and democratic Afghanistan have led us to do the right thing. She added that this diversity ensures the inclusiveness of the delegation.
Ms. Gailani continued and said that we want a peace that includes everyone, a peace that brings social justice and the young generation to see their future inside Afghanistan, not in migration. She stressed that if we only wanted a peace that could end the war, we would have lost the international community’s support – a support which we need for the development of Afghanistan.
She added that for a greater involvement of different strata the negotiating team has been connected to the provinces online and this mechanism will continue.
This member of the negotiating team added that the religious scholars of the negotiating team are in contact with the religious scholars of the Islamic world, and this has led to the support of the great religious scholars of the world for the negotiation process and it strengthens the rightful claim of the Afghan people.
Later in the meeting, Nadera Nahrinawal, Anarkali Honaryar, Kowita Sediqi, Amena Hassanpor, Nasima Omari, Zohra Yousuf, Gulchehra Bahin, Sara Sirat, Forozan Rasouli and Mina Sadat, ten members of the United Voice of Afghan Women for Peace Policy shared their concerns, demands and questions. 
Violence escalation, ceasefire, the rights of ethnic and religious minorities, the Taliban's views on women's rights, challenges to the advancement of the process, international support for the process, the activities of provincial groups of United Voice of Afghan Women, the release of Taliban prisoners, and the will of the parties for peace were among the main agenda points. 
In response to some questions, Habiba Sarabi, a member of the negotiating team, said that presence of a smaller number of women in the negotiating team did not affected their effectiveness in protecting women's rights. She added that all members of the delegation believe in women's rights and democratic values and that women have their support. Meanwhile, women are present in all working committees of the board and are not only involved in women's issues.
Habiba Sarabi added that the negotiations have its ups and downs and the peace experience of other countries also shows that the number of war casualties have risen during the negotiations; But stopping violence is a major part of our job.
Refuting the hypothesis that war could act as a tool of pressure at the negotiating table, Ghulam Farooq Majroh, a member of the negotiating team, said that: “We have a plan for how to implement the ceasefire, because we believe that the practical step that can lead to the success of the negotiations is a ceasefire. We will put our effort in this regard.” 
Sharifa Zurmati Wardak, another member of the negotiating team, said that work is under way to resolve the disputes, adding that forty years of ongoing war caused the negotiation process to need more patience.
She added that we understand our historical responsibility and we try not to let our emotions be an obstacle in the way of this historic opportunity.
Sayed Sadat Mansoor Naderi, State Minister for Peace and a member of the negotiating team, said in response to some questions that his temporary visit to Kabul was to reach out to the tasks of the State Ministry for Peace and the other three members came to Kabul because of their personal issues. 
Mr. Naderi continued that the approach of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan from the position of an established government is different and responsible towards the peace negotiations. Our will is decisive for the success of the negotiations and we will make more efforts for the success of the negotiations.
At the end, the State Minister for Peace said that the Ministry will continue its role to facilitate the work of the consultative group of the United Voice of Afghan Women for Peace Policy.
Concluding the meeting, Fatema Gailani, member of the negotiating team, said that the negotiating team's approach and decisions are innovative and are based on the Islamic and democratic values we believe in.
She added that we will work for the success of the negotiations according to the criteria and expectations of the people and the confirmation of the final result will be with the people of Afghanistan.
It is noteworthy that the United Voice of Afghan Women for Peace Policy has been formed in the past by women activists in civil society and women's rights activists in Kabul and provinces, and provincial groups of the United Voice of Afghan Women have also been established in several provinces.

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