In a joint statement issued on Friday, representatives of the extended Troika, comprising the United States, Russia, China and Pakistan, called upon the Taliban to refrain from launching a spring offensive.
“We reiterate our call on all parties to the conflict in Afghanistan to reduce the level of violence in the country and on the Taliban not to pursue a Spring offensive,” the statement says. “We condemn in the strongest terms any attacks deliberately targeting civilians in Afghanistan and call on all parties to respect their obligations under international humanitarian law in all circumstances, including those related to protection of civilians.”
“We expect the Taliban to fulfill its counterterrorism commitments, including preventing terrorist groups and individuals from using Afghan soil to threaten the security of any other country; not hosting these groups and preventing them from recruiting, training, and fundraising. We expect the Afghan government to continue counterterrorism cooperation with the international community,” the statement says.
The members of Troika and Pakistan underlined that they do not support the establishment in Afghanistan of any government imposed by force, consistent with the Joint Statement of the March 18 Expanded Troika.
According to them, any peace agreement must include protections for the rights of all Afghans, including women, men, children, victims of war, and minorities, and should respond to the strong desire of all Afghans for economic, social and political development including the rule of law.
Moscow, Washington, Beijing and Islamabad believe that the peace process in the country should continue during the foreign troop withdrawal.
“We reiterate that the withdrawal of foreign troops should ensure a steady transition of the situation in Afghanistan,” the statement reads. “We stress that, during the withdrawal period, the peace process should not be disrupted, no fights or turbulence shall occur in Afghanistan, and the safety of international troops should be ensured.”
It worth mentioning that the extended Troika members met separately with negotiation teams of the Afghan government and the Taliban in Doha to accelerate the inter-Afghan peace talks.