Muslim Community Lobby Ireland is an independent organization established 1st May 2007. Its motto is TO USE THE VOTE RIGHTLY AND TO RAISE THE MUSLIM COMMUNITY AWARNESS WITH THEIR RIGHTS AND TO PROMOTE TOLERANCE AND UNDERSTANDING OF OTHER EXISTING GROUPS. لترشيد استعمال الصوت الانتخابي ولتوعية وتعريف المسلمين بحقوقهم في ايرلندا وان يعيشوا بتفهم للواقع وللجماعات الاخرى الموجودة على الساحة

Monday, February 25, 2008

Irish diplomat expelled: talked to Al Qaeda-linked militants

Sat Feb 16, 2008 7:25 pm

An Irish diplomat who was expelled from Afghanistan for talking to Taliban-linked insurgents defended his actions today, insisting that dialogue could persuade militants to abandon violence. "There is a critical difference between what is discreet and what is covert," Michael Semple, who was the second most senior European Union official in Afghanistan, said in an interview with the Guardian. "What we were doing was simply discreet because that was what was required. But it was totally in line with official policy to bring people in from the cold." Semple was expelled late last year with Briton Mervyn Patterson, a UN political adviser, for threatening national security by contacting the Taliban in the volatile southern province of Helmand. A February 4 Financial Times report from Kabul said discovery of the contact -- and a secret British plan to train former Taliban fighters who wanted to switch sides -- had worsened relations between Kabul and London. Britain has denied being "engaged" with the Taliban and Semple told The Guardian that they had not opened any such channel with Al-Qaeda-linked Taliban. Semple said he firmly believed that "with good management you could break two-thirds of the insurgents away from" what he called "those irreconcilables" -- hardline militants totally against any accommodation with coalition forces."There isn't a serious actor in Afghanistan who says the only way forward is to fight your way out."
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