Ex-president Hamid Karzai says ‘serious mistakes were made by the US’ in Afghanistan

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Former president of Afghanistan Hamid Karzai said that serious mistakes were made by the United States in his country but held out hope that ongoing intra-Afghan negotiations with the Taliban brokered by Washington would bring lasting peace.

Karzai, speaking from Kabul with Al Arabiya senior anchor Mayssoun Noueihed in a special interview, said the US’ so-called “War or Terror” was the basis of the issues Afghanistan has faced in the past two decades.

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“Serious mistakes were made by the United States of America. They did not conduct their so-called War on Terror from where it was coming. But they went and began to hurt and bomb the Afghan villages, the Afghan people and began to arrest of Afghan people, that became the foundation of the troubles that we have now and the foundation also of my disagreements with the United States,” Karzai said.

Karzai became Afghanistan’s president after a 2001 US-led invasion ousted the Taliban government.

Peace talks between warring Afghan sides will begin in September said the country’s top peace negotiator last Thursday in Kabul, a crucial diplomatic process needed to end about two decades of war in Afghanistan.

US President Donald Trump’s administration has been pushing both sides to resolve difference and sit across the negotiating table, paving way to end one of America’s longest war.

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“For the start of talks, the most important thing, the most important element in that agreement is an end to hostilities in Afghanistan and inter-fighting Afghanistan, and the withdrawal of US troops and the return of Afghanistan to intra Afghan dialogue and peace talks. These are fundamental principles to which we agree,” Karzai told Al Arabiya.

“The aspirations for Afghanistan are the same, a peaceful Afghanistan, a stable Afghanistan, a United Afghanistan. Now how to function, how to govern, how to move towards that, there may be different interpretations, it is these interpretations of certain values within society, the interpretation of how to move progress. What is progress is to be discussed, and I'm sure that agreement will come,” the former president added.

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