UN Removes Former Afghan Warlord form Its Blacklist

Written by  Published by:Shiite News
Published in Asia
Saturday, 04 February 2017

The United Nations has removed the name of a former Afghan warlord from its Daesh (ISIL) and al-Qaeda sanctions list.

According to a statement posted Friday by the Security Council, a UN committee removed Gulbuddin Hekmatyar's name from the sanctions list. The statement said Hekmatyar, leader of the militant organization Hezb-i-Islami, would no longer have his assets frozen, be subject to a travel ban or to an arms embargo.

Hekmatyar, a former warlord who nursed bitter rivalries with other Afghan factions, agreed to lay down arms last year. Amin Karim, his chief negotiator, earlier told The Associated Press that he would return to the capital in "a matter of weeks, not months."

Hekmatyar is seen as a potential rival to President Ashraf Ghani and Chief Executive Abdullah Abdullah, who have governed the country through a shaky power-sharing agreement since the disputed elections of 2014. His return could inject new political uncertainty as the government struggles to confront a reinvigorated Taliban that has been advancing on several fronts.

In September, Afghanistan's president Ashraf Ghani signed a peace treaty with Hekmatyar. Ghani pledged in the treaty to lobby the US and the United Nations to remove Hekmatyar and his party from terrorist blacklists. Hekmatyar signed the agreement via a video link into Kabul's presidential palace. The ceremony was broadcast live on television at that time.

The 25-point peace agreement gives Hekmatyar and his followers immunity for past actions and grants them full political rights.

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