(ATN News): President Mohammad Ashraf Ghani has called on the UN Security Council (UNSC) to emphasize the implementation of sanctions as a critical tool for the success of the ongoing intra-Afghan talks in Doha. 
Addressing the UN Security Council’s high-level meeting via a video conference on Friday night to discuss how it can support the peace process in Afghanistan, Ghani stated that “peace is the priority of the Afghan people.” He urged the UNSC to press the Taliban for a sustainable ceasefire in the country.  “I request the UN Security Council to reiterate the call for a ceasefire…a ceasefire is not only a critical first step to peace but will also mitigate the precarious humanitarian situation caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, allowing us to reach people in conflict areas as a second wave of the virus hits, which unfortunately is upon us,” Ghani noted. I would request the Council to stress the effective and thorough implementation of sanctions regimes as a key instrument for the success of the negotiations with Taliban,” Ghani said. He added that the Taliban has yet to fulfill the conditions set. “We have yet to see…Taliban’s commitment to an Afghanistan where women’s constitutional rights are protected, and minorities are not discriminated against,” President Ghani noted. Meanwhile, the Taliban in a statement on Saturday condemned Ghani’s request, and “considers it resentful attitude towards the peace process and continuation of the war.”