News - Afghanistan
In response to rising tensions between national unity government leaders and former president Hamid Karzai, Senators in Parliament on Tuesday implored President Ashraf Ghani, Chief Executive Abdullah Abdullah and Karzai to put aside their differences for the sake of the nation.
The entreaties from the Senate came after rumors were sparked Monday by an American diplomat who claimed that former president Karzai was looking to undermine the Ghani administration. Upon hearing of it, Chief Executive Abdullah, who was speaking at a gathering in northeastern Badakhshan province that same day, expressed outrage at and condemned any attempts to push the national unity government out due to its supposed "inefficiency."
In Senate on Tuesday, the message was decidedly one of deescalation, looking to diffuse the acrimony between the country's top leaders before it goes any further.
"Let's visit the three leaders – Ghani, Abdullah and Karzai – and beg in front of them and tell them that for the sake of God help the people and heal their pain," Senator Zalmai Zabuli told his fellow representatives.
Another senator, Gul Ahmad Azami, hinted that the tensions were related to the lack of coordination among security agencies seen in recent months. "Let's suggest a mechanism to the government and find a way that can help us get rid of the current situation," he said.
Some, while not defending attempts to undermine the national unity government, did not hold back criticism of Ghani and Abdullah's performance thus far.
"Our people are still sacrificing. They are killed every day. This is the achievement of the national unity government," Senator Nisar Haris said.
The First Deputy of the Senate, Mohammad Alam Izidyar, warned that the rumors of divisions among the government's past and present leadership could embolden insurgents. "Any kind of weakness toward the enemies of the Afghan people and the Afghan security forces will weaken the people and the forces," he said.