By hosting a meeting between the Taliban and other Afghan delegates, Moscow has greatly contributed to a peace process in Afghanistan, ex-President Hamid Karzai said, denouncing years of “failed” US military presence and policies.
“We would like to express our deep gratitude to the Russian government for the efforts it took to create conditions for the intra-Afghan meeting in Moscow,” Karzai told Sputnik news agency, adding that the two-day talks “exceeded all expectations.”
The former Afghan president called the talks a “historic step” and called Moscow’s approach “successful and effective.” Karzai spoke highly of Russia’s role and expressed his hope that Moscow would continue to contribute to intra-Afghan reconciliation until “Afghanistan gets back on its feet.”
'We welcome a positive Russian role that facilitates reconciliation, that facilitates a peace settlement, that facilitates inter-Afghan dialogue' https://t.co/RXD28vKCj1
— RT (@RT_com) February 9, 2019
In contrast, his assessment of the 18-year US-led military campaign in Afghanistan was far less positive. The NATO mission in Afghanistan has failed, Karzai said, adding that the military presence of American troops and their allies on Afghan soil had only led to “many people suffering at their hands.” The ex-president also said he would like to see all foreign troops withdrawing from his country “as soon as possible,” even though he admitted that it would likely be a “very difficult process.” Karzai also dismissed US claims about providing security for Afghanistan.'
Read more: ‘All expectations exceeded’: Former Afghan president Karzai rathers Moscow talks than US ‘failure’