Karzai asks Taliban leader to stop atrocities | india | Hindustan Times
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Karzai asks Taliban leader to stop atrocities

india Updated: Jul 05, 2006 17:34 IST

Afghanistan President Hamid Karzai has asked Taliban leader Mullah Mohammed Omar to stop atrocities, carried out by Talibals, on people.

"If he is a good Muslim, he should not do that. If he is a good Afghan, he should not do that," Karzai said in an interview with Kyodo News in Kabul on Monday.

Karzai's call comes in the backdrop of Taliban militants launching fiercest attacks since the regime's fall in 2001.

More than 700 people, mostly militants, have been killed since mid-May in increasing violence in southern Afghanistan.

"He must come out and answer for all those crimes, all the killing of innocent people, the burning of the schools, all the killing of engineers and doctors who had come to help us, especially in the past four years," Karzai said.

Omar was the country's de facto head of state from 1996 to 2001. Now he is suspected to be hiding in a tribal area on the Pakistani border.

The US government has offered a $10 million reward for information on Omar.

Asked whether he is ready to talk to Omar if he comes out, Karzai said, "He is on the international list of terrorism. It is an international question. It is not an Afghanistan question at all. The international community has to decide whether we are willing to engage with him or not."

On the recent violence in Afghanistan, Karzai said, "The external factor is extremely important.