MAZAR-I-SHARIF - The governor of northern Balkh province on Tuesday renewed his opposition to the establishment of the proposed US military bases in Afghanistan.
However, a number of provincial councils' members from several provinces defended the bases as the need of the hour.
Governor Atta Mohammad Noor told members of provincial councils attending a two-day conference that started today in Mazar-i-Sharif, the provincial capital, that no military bases of powerful countries were needed in Afghanistan.
The national level conference of provincial council members has been arranged to review the peace process and the security transition program.
In his opening remarks, Noor said peace which remained one of the major challenges facing Afghanistan required a transparent and workable mechanism, something the nation had not been provided so far.
He said it was the duty of the high peace council to show the nation the real picture of terrorism. "Sometimes the situation goes worse to the extent that one cannot understand who is the enemy," he said.
The governor said it should be figured out to whom the peace talks should be carried out. "To whom we are talking about peace and welcome them with roses as peace envoys, they kill our negotiators," he said in a reference to the assassination of former high peace council head, Prof. Burhanuddin Rabbani.
Rabbani was killed on Sept. 20, 2011 last year at his Kabul residence by a man posing as peace envoy who concealed explosives in his turban.
The governor vehemently opposed the US military bases, saying there was no need for the bases, which he believed could threaten Afghanistan's sovereignty.
But provincial council members who attended the first day of the conference believed the US military bases were in the interest of the nation.
A member of Nangarhar provincial council, Malak Baba, told Pajhwok Afghan News the American bases were imperative under the current circumstances. He said if the bases were not allowed, the enemies of the country would continue to unleash violence and atrocities on the Afghans.
Another public representative from southeastern Khost province, Daud Shah, said last year's Loya Jirga had discussed the issue in detail and shared its suggestions with the government in writing.
He said the Afghan government should enter a short-term agreement with the US on the bases because every Afghan would oppose a prolonged presence of American troops in the country.