Fourth meeting of anti-Taliban leaders to convene in Austria on Monday

The fourth meeting of anti-Taliban figures is set to take place in Vienna on Monday, hosted by the Austrian Institute for International Affairs, and will feature various anti-Taliban political figures.

The organizers stated in a statement that they hope this meeting will help bridge differences, strengthen solidarity, and create a unified vision for Afghanistan’s future.

The attendees will include representatives from anti-Taliban fronts, politicians, civil society activists, and women.

The statement noted, “We expect this meeting to bring political differences closer and pave the way for a common and unified vision for Afghanistan’s future.”

The Vienna meetings, initiated by several anti-Taliban figures and hosted by the International Institute for Austrian Affairs, first began on September 15, 2022. These meetings concluded with a statement emphasizing political consensus, support for women’s rights, the non-recognition of the Taliban by the international community, and increased pressure on the Taliban to uphold human rights.

The first Vienna meeting, on September 15, 2022, included politicians such as Rangin Dadfar Spanta and Rahmatullah Nabil, leaders of the Resistance Front, former parliament members, and representatives of women and civil society. The meeting aimed to bolster political consensus among political figures and groups, stressing the non-recognition of the Taliban and support for women’s rights.

The second Vienna meeting, held on April 24, 2023, also featured anti-Taliban figures, including Resistance Front leaders, women, and political party representatives. The agenda focused on strengthening political consensus, resolving Afghanistan’s challenges through dialogue, applying diplomatic pressure on the Taliban, and ensuring citizens’ fundamental rights.

The third Vienna meeting, held on December 3, 2023, gathered politicians and women for three days. Participants called on the United Nations to facilitate a political process to change Afghanistan’s situation.

The upcoming fourth meeting coincides with the third Doha meeting, scheduled to take place in nine days, hosted by the United Nations in Qatar, with a delegation from the Taliban expected to attend.

Political analyst Tariq Farhadi commented, “Host countries are trying to integrate political figures with the Taliban, but the goals of political figures have not aligned with those of the host countries.”

Afghan citizens also have expectations from the Vienna meeting. “Political figures must set aside their differences and stand united against the Taliban,” one resident of Faryab, who wished to remain anonymous, said. “Our expectation from the Vienna participants is to prioritize the demands of the Afghan people.”

The fourth round of anti-Taliban meetings in Vienna takes place amid anticipation for the third Doha meeting, which is set to host a Taliban delegation in Qatar.