Editor in Chief: Moh. Reza Huwaida Thursday, September 20th, 2018

Afghanistan: One of the Core Issues of Recent NATO Summit

Last week, NATO held a meeting of foreign ministers in Berlin which was principally arranged to find out a solution for current Libya's political deadlock, but the members failed to agree on a common ground. In that ministerial meeting, along with the issue of Libya, NATO's engagement in Afghanistan was another core issue that was intensively discussed.

But this topic did bear similar difficulties as that of Libya's. In the meeting, NATO members expressed broad support for intensifying diplomatic surge for Afghan-led political settlement. "On Afghanistan, allies affirmed the transition principles and expressed broad support for intensifying what we've been calling the diplomatic surge towards an Afghan-led political settlement," the assistant secretary of state for European and Eurasian affairs, Mr. Philip Gordon, said.

However, it is not the first time that involved countries are supporting a new approach towards the issues of Afghanistan. This approach is a "cautious shift from military-oriented policies towards diplomacy-oriented one". Years of military engagement and expenditure of billions of dollars in the country has not yielded the intended results. Moreover, By every passing year, civilians and military tolls have been dramatically increased, but, many maintains, the central-rock of Taliban militants and its ally Al-Qaida has not been broken down yet.

This progressing situation, on one hand, more than ever, increases economic, military and political cost of the ongoing involvement and may not eliminate militants from the country and ensure peace and security of region and member nations, on the other. So, what can be done?

In order to come out of this situation, NATO and US along with Afghan government focused on Afghanization of counterinsurgency campaign. That is supporting rather peaceful initiative of Kabul government—involving militants in the current political process, but with certain conditions. The international community is quite sure that an unconditional engagement of Taliban militants in the political process certainly put an end to their huge military sacrifices and financial donations.

So, to enforce the so-called Afghan-led settlement policy, there are requirement to be fulfilled first. One of those requirement is a gradual transition of responsibilities and continuation of financial, technical logistic and, more importantly, diplomatic support. This was the issue which was further emphasized on in the meeting.