Afghan Peace Process: Mike Pompeo arrives in Kabul amidst intense bickering

Deal signing ceremony in Doha

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo arrived in Kabul on Monday amidst intense bickering over the Presidential post and the peace process being put in the cold storage.

The Secretary of State’s arrival in Kabul is expected to arrest the fall out of the Afghan Presidential elections and kick start the peace process. This comes even as the world is grappling to deal with the effects of the COVID-19.

The Presidential elections conducted in the months of October saw intense bickering between the incumbent President Ashraf Ghani and his opponent Abdullah Abdullah. Ghani was declared the winner and assumed office in March. The latter contested the results and declared it to be a case of fraudulent elections.

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It is this delay that has delayed the implementation of the Afghan peace process and the Intra-Taliban talks that were scheduled to have kick started.

In the weeks following the signing of the agreement in Doha in February, the various groups have attacked Afghanistan and threatened its security, even as hopes of peace fade away.

The agreement gives a time period of 14 months to the US to withdraw its troops from Afghanistan and this agreement is crucial in an election year, ahead of the Presidential polls in November in the US.

The Secretary of State will hope to settle the differences that threaten to bury the deal before its implementation.

India is closely monitoring the developments and has expressed its concerns over the deal.

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