ISLAMABAD: Afghan religious scholars have issued a fatwa, declaring peace negotiations in the presence of foreign forces is “against Islamic injunctions”.

“Americans want to force the valiant Afghan nation to surrender under the excuse of peace. We hope our Mujahideen will not be deceived through these tactics… and not hold peace talks until even a single invading soldier stays in Afghanistan,” the fatwa issued by Ittehad-e-Ulema-e-Afghanistan read. “We wish they would stand by their commitments.”

The edict comes at a time when diplomatic efforts by different stakeholders in Afghanistan have been intensified.

Senior Afghan, Chinese, Pakistani and the US diplomats are scheduled to meet in Islamabad on February 6 to hold further discussions on a road-map to ask the Taliban to join the peace process.