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Zalmay Khalilzad, the US envoy for reconciliation in Afghanistan, has informed the Afghan President, Ashraf Ghani, that his recent discussions with the Taliban on the issue of the ceasefire have not progressed.
Cairo – Sputnik. According to the Afghan presidential account on Twitter, Khalilzad met the Afghan president in Kabul today, Saturday, when he briefed him on the results of his talks with the Taliban and Pakistani officials, and informed him of “noticeable progress in the talks with the Taliban.”
Khalilzad told the Afghan president that he is “awaiting a clear response from the Taliban about the practical mechanisms for a ceasefire or a marked and lasting reduction in violence.”
Talks between the Taliban and the United States, represented by the US Special Envoy for Afghan Peace and Reconciliation, Zalmay Khalilzad, began since the summer of last year, in the absence of the Afghan government, which is the largest absentee from the dialogue sessions in light of the Taliban’s insistence not to negotiate with it as a “puppet of the Americans.”
After eight rounds of negotiations, the US special envoy for Afghan peace and reconciliation, Zalmay Khalilzad, and the Taliban political bureau delegation, signed in Doha a draft peace agreement that includes a general ceasefire, the withdrawal of US forces from the country, and a refusal to use Afghan territory to attack the United States or Other countries, start peace talks between Afghans.
Afghan politicians affirm that the primary goal of the American talks with the Taliban is to create the appropriate ground for launching direct Afghan peace talks between the government and the movement, in an effort to end the Afghan crisis, noting that progress has been made in this framework.
US National Security Adviser Robert O’Brien has announced that US President Donald Trump may strike a deal with the Taliban this year, and even if the deal is not reached, Washington intends to reduce the number of its troops in Afghanistan.