As vote counting continues after parliamentary elections, Afghani power broker Younus Qanooni underlines that the country's future cannot be modelled on a Western liberal democracy.
"Afghans will never agree on any secular or liberal system. Islam is the modern system and Afghanistan’s future is tied with Islam,” he said points out.
Qanooni, who was a key figure in the Northern Alliance which helped the US overthrow the Taliban in 2001, heads the 12-party National Understanding Front.
“The Taliban distorted the image and teachings of Islam, otherwise Islam is a very tolerant and progressive religion which co-exists with the international community very well,” he asserted.
Qanooni maintained that the Mujahadeen cannot be ignored in the democratic process, arguing that they are the real leaders of Afghanistan who sacrificed their lives during the resistance against the former Soviet Union and liberated Afghanistan.
He also told that the Taliban are still getting support from Afghanistan, which is "neither in the long term interests of Pakistan nor of Afghanistan" and argued that president Karzai’s policy for dialogue with the Taliban is responsible for the violence - he says this has allowed them to establish safe havens in the south and south eastern Afghanistan."
Qanooni also took a swipe at the incumbent Afghan government for the spread of the drugs trade as Afghanistan remains the world's biggest opium producer, the AKI reports.
Photo: the AKI