Abdullah scorns Ghani’s decree on HCNR formation  

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KABUL: Chairman of the newly-established High Council for National Reconciliation (HCNR) Abdullah Abdullah on Monday said the formation of the reconciliation body was one of his many authorities and that a presidential decree in this regard was unwelcome.  


President Ashraf Ghani issued a decree on Saturday, naming 46 members for the council, including leadership and deputies.


Abdullah, however, in a statement said that establishing the council was his authority and it didn’t require a presidential decree.


He stated that the composition of HCNR should be national, comprehensive and inclusive, adding consultations with political leaders and civil society had already been launched and were being finalized.


The council came into being following a power-sharing deal between Ghani and Abdullah that was signed in May. The reconciliation body is supposed to have the final say on the points that the 21-member Afghan negotiating team takes up with the Taliban during the expected intra-Afghan talks in Qatar.


The list of members also included former president Hamid Karzai and Jamiat-i-Islami leader Salahuddin Rabbani but they both revoked their membership.


This comes as both Ghani and Abdullah during their last five-year term under the National Unity Government (NUG) had many tussles and differences on key national issues.