U.S.-Afghanistan Relations Post-Election: What Now?
Monday, October 7th – With U.S.-Taliban peace talks stalled and the future course of the peace process unclear, Afghans will head to the polls on September 28 to elect a president. Ashraf Ghani has focused his peace strategy on winning a second term and then negotiating with the Taliban with a renewed democratic mandate. Opposition candidates accuse Ghani of shutting other political groups out of the government and out of a peace process, arguing that their election will open new opportunities to negotiate with the Taliban. United States Institute of Peace (USIP) and Partnership for a Secure America (PSA) held a discussion of the impact and ramifications of the Afghan Presidential election on Afghanistan, the prospects for peace, and U.S.Afghanistan relations. Scott Worden, Director of Afghanistan and Central Asia Programs at USIP, and Ahmad Khalid Majidyar, Senior Program Officer for the Middle East & North Africa at the National Endowment for Democracy (NED), reported on their trips to Kabul during the elections. Moderated by Michael Phelan, Senior Advisor of Africa and Asia Programs at USIP.