'Unofficial talks with Taliban on'
Afghanistan President Hamid Karzai has said unofficial negotiations are taking place with the Taliban, who are like "kids who have run away from the family".world Updated: Oct 11, 2010 11:27 IST
Afghanistan President Hamid Karzai has said unofficial negotiations are taking place with the Taliban, who are like "kids who have run away from the family".
Karzai said the formation of a peace council would help continue the talks "officially and more rigorously".
"We have been talking to the Taliban as countryman to countryman, talk in that manner," Karzai told CNN's "Larry King Live" programme in an interview.
"Not as a regular official contact with the Taliban with a fixed address, but rather unofficial personal contacts have been going on for quite some time."
Karzai said the High Peace Council, an initiative headed by former president Buhanuddin Rabbani, has been tasked with boosting negotiations with the Taliban.
"Now that the peace council has come into existence, these talks will go on, and will go on officially and more rigorously, I hope," Karzai said.
He went on to say that "the Taliban, those of whom who are Afghans and the sons of Afghan soil, who have been driven to violence by various factors beyond their control and beyond ours caused by circumstances in Afghanistan, we want them to come back to their country.
"They are like kids who have run away... from the family. The family should try to bring them back and give them better discipline and incorporate them back into their family and society. President Rabbani assuming chairmanship today of the peace council is exactly in that spirit."
However, the Afghan government was not willing to talk with groups like Al Qaeda, he said.
"But those who are a part of Al Qaeda and the other terrorist networks who are ideologically against us or who are working against Afghanistan knowingly and out of the purpose of hatred and enmity - those of course we have to work against."