Peace in Tatters as Taliban Turn Guns on Troops

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The Taliban carried out its first attack on Monday afternoon after it got a go ahead from the leadership, killing three people in a bomb blast at a football ground in Shmbwath area in the eastern province of Khost. Seven people were injured in the attack ….. writes Asian Lite Newsdesk

 by . Just two days after the US and Taliban signed the peace deal, the Afghan militant group shortchanged the agreement by ordering its members to launch terror attacks against the Afghanistan government.

The Taliban carried out its first attack on Monday afternoon after it got a go ahead from the leadership, killing three people in a bomb blast at a football ground in Shmbwath area in the eastern province of Khost. Seven people were injured in the attack.

Sources said the military commission of Taliban issued directives to its officials and zones throughout Afghanistan after signing the deal. “The Mujahideen of the Islamic emirates are once again directed to start attacks against the puppet government administration. However, their foreign invaders are not included in the agreement. Orders regarding the occupiers would be issued in the next few days,” the military commission said in a statement.

Taliban spokesperson Zabiullah Mujahideen told the Afghan Islamic Press that operations against foreign and Afghan forces would be carried out as per the mechanism of the peace deal. Taliban issued orders of attacks on the Afghan forces, he said.

The attacks are an indication of the Taliban ending the partial truce with the US. Sources said peace will remain evasive since there is not much meeting ground between the Taliban and the Afghan government. Soon after the peace deal was signed, Afghanistan President Ashraf Ghani refused to release Taliban prisoners, which was part of the agreement.

The Afghan government is not willing to risk its stability by releasing Taliban prisoners, sources said.

Abdullah’s Team

As the March 10 deadline for the intra-Afghan negotiations approaches, Chief Executive Abdullah Abdullah’s office has finalized their list of delegates for the talks with the Taliban, a media report said.

In a statement on Monday, the office said that Abdullah had met with former Mujahideen leader Abdul Rab Rasul Sayyaf and former president Hamid Karzai where they discussed the recently signed US-Taliban peace agreement and ways to implement it, according to the TOLO News report

“The Chief Executive’s Office and the Stability and Convergence team, in consultation with a number of elders and political leaders in Afghanistan, have finalized a list (for the negotiating team),” Abdullah’s deputy spokesman Omid Maisam said.

“We hope that the Presidential Palace, as a part of the government of national unity, will participate (with the team).”

Meanwhile, the Presidential Palace said that the negotiating team will not only comprised governmental officials.

“We are not insisting that the delegation be all governmental people; we insist that the delegation be limited and effective and committed to the values of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan,” TOLO News quoted Waheed Omar, a presidential advisor, as saying on Monday.

But politicians have said the current opportunity for peace will be lost if the National Unity Government leaders delay in their decision on the negotiating team.

As of Tuesday, the Afghan government has eight days to form the negotiating team before the talks begin on March 10.

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