Afghanistan’s ex-president Karzai in Turkey for talks with exiled politicians

Photo: Reuters.

Former president Hamid Karzai landed in Turkey on Friday for a three-day visit where he will meet with Afghan politicians in an effort to create “consensus” among them, two sources from the Council of National Resistance for the Salvation of Afghanistan said.

Ahead of his trip to Turkey, Karzai met with former justice minister Fazl Ahmad Manawi in Germany, who is closely linked with the anti-Taliban resistance front, led by Ahmad Massoud.

A source close to Karzai said that Manawi represented the resistance front at the meeting.

Also in Istanbul, the former president is expected to meet with former mujahedeen leader Abdul Rab Rasul Sayyaf, former vice president Karim Khalili, among other politicians who are part of the council for national resistance for the salvation of Afghanistan, a source said.

The sources said that Karzai will then travel to Ankara to meet with former vice president Abdul Rashid Dostum and Mohammad Mohaqiq, the head of the Islamic Unity Party of Afghanistan.

The aim of the meetings is to create a consensus for talks with the Taliban, sources said.

Karzai’s meeting with Fazl Ahmad Manawi in Germany.

Karzai will also meet with Jamiat-e-Islami leader Salahuddin Rabbani in Ankara.

The council’s members also had a virtual meeting with Karzai on Friday where they discussed upcoming meetings of political and jihadi leaders with Karzai, said a source from the council.

The source added that the meetings will not be on behalf of the council of national resistance for the salvation of Afghanistan.

Karzai was banned from traveling by the Taliban for 15 months after the group took control in Afghanistan. However, he embarked on a foreign trip last week and met with the US special envoy Thomas West in the UAE. A source confirmed that Karzai also met with former vice president Ahmad Zia Massoud and former Balkh governor Ata Mohammad Noor in the UAE.