Reuters in an exclusive report hinted that President Ashraf Ghani will propose a new presidential election under the peace plan within six months, he is putting his idea as a counter-offer to a U.S proposal he has got no interest in.
Two senior officials told Reuters that President will unveil his plan during the international gathering in Turkey which is scheduled for the next month, which will determine his refusal to accept Washington’s plan for the current elected government to be replaced by an interim administration.
According to Reuter, the US is pushing for a peace deal between the Taliban and Afghan government following the US-Taliban deal in Doha that has set a deadline for withdrawal of international troops by May of this year.
Due to the stalled peace negotiations in Doha, U.S. Special Envoy Zalmay Khalilzad has been sharing a proposal that would replace the Kabul government with an interim system, but President Ghani strongly opposed the idea for an elected government to step aside for an unelected leadership.
One senior official on condition of anonymity told Reuters that “the counterproposal which we are going to present at the Istanbul meeting would be to call for early presidential elections if the Taliban agree on a ceasefire,”.
“The president would never agree to step aside and any future government should be formed through a democratic process, not a political deal.” Another Afghan official said to Reuters.
A third official indicated that this proposal will result in early elections ( did not specify the exact time) but said the road map was already shared with Zalmay Khalilzad, US special envoy to Afghan reconciliation process.
Washington on the other hand is seeking regional support to push for a quick peace and hasty withdrawal, and leave behind a shared government between the republic and the Taliban insurgents.
Reuter echoed the diplomats reporting that without President Ghani’s support the move forward for the hasty peace deal would be difficult.
Ghani’s proposal will require the UN to closely monitor the election, ensure its legitimacy and acceptance by all warring sides.
Presidential Palace have not yet commented on this matter.
This comes as earlier President Ghani has said that he will not jeopardize the future of millions of Afghans for such hasty and unplanned moves.