A breakthrough has been reported in the stalled talks between the Afghanistan government and the Taliban after the two sides agreed to include the February 29 US deal, UN endorsements, commitments of the negotiating teams and the will of the Afghan people as bases for upcoming negotiations, according to sources.
The sources said on Sunday that said Afghan chief negotiator Mohammad Massoom Stanikzai and presidential peace advisor Salam Rahimi were on a secret trip to Kabul, seeking President Ashraf Ghani’s approval for the agreed formulation, reports TOLO News.
But there has been no confirmation on this development by either of the two sides.
This comes as negotiators from both the sides met visiting US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo in Doha on November 21.
During their meeting with the top US diplomat, the Afghan Republic negotiators insisted on an end to violence and called for preserving the country’s achievements.
“Concerns of members of the peace delegation about the increase in violence and the US support to the Afghan peace negotiations, which is a common goal, were discussed,” said Habiba Sarabi, a peace negotiator from the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan.
US special envoy Zalmay Khalilzad was also present in the meeting.
Meanwhile, the Taliban said that during their meeting with Pompeo, they insisted on the implementation of the Doha agreement, the removal of names of the group’s members from UN blacklist, release of their prisoners, and the peace negotiations, TOLO News reported.
“The release of remaining prisoners of the Islamic emirate of Afghanistan and ending the blacklists and also issues around intra-Afghan negotiations were discussed,” Taliban spokesman Mohammad Naeem said.