Wednesday, January 20, 2021

Khalilzad: Seventh round of US-Taliban negotiations among most progressive ever produced

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Zubair Yaqoob
Zubair Yaqoob
The author has diversified experience in investigative journalism. He is Chief content editor at wnobserver.com He can be reached at: [email protected]

The seventh round of peace talks between the United States and Afghanistan currently being held in Qatar is among the most progressive ever produced, US special representative Zalmay Khalilzad said yesterday.

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The Taliban clan held a meeting with US representatives to create a deal that would see the withdrawal of US troops in return for some guarantees.

“The six-day period is the most productive round we’ve ever had with the Taliban.

“Roughly, we are discussing four things: terrorism, foreign troop withdrawals, Afghan internal negotiations,  dialogue and truce.

“For the first time, I can say that we have important discussions, talks and developments in all four issues,” Khalilzad said in Qatar.

The Khalilzad added that the US-Taliban direct talks that endeavored to end the 18-year war would halt a separate two-day meeting with Afghan representatives and will resume Tuesday.

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In Qatar Taliban office spokesman Suhail Shaheen said they were satisfied with the US-backed talks so far.

“We are pleased with this development and hope that all other things will be over. So far no problems have arisen, “he said via Twitter.

Potential agreements arising from the talks will see US consent to bring its troops out there after more than 17 years in there in return for the Taliban’s assurance that Afghanistan is no longer a stronghold of extremist tribes.

The US-Taliban talks revolve around four major issues, namely the eradication of terrorists, the presence of foreign forces, the internal dialogue of Afghanistan and the permanent cease-fire.

US government sources have earlier said they are hoping to reach a consensus ahead of the postponed Afghanistan elections twice before being set in September.

In late June, the US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo made a quiet visit to Kabul and expressed hope to sign a peace deal with the Taliban before September 1.

Read also: 12 killed, 50 injured after a car explosion in Afghanistan

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Zubair Yaqoob
Zubair Yaqoob
The author has diversified experience in investigative journalism. He is Chief content editor at wnobserver.com He can be reached at: [email protected]
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