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Delegation From Kabul Heads To Doha For All-Afghan Talks

06 Jul 2019 Radio Free Europe

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Delegation From Kabul Heads To Doha For All-Afghan Talks

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An Afghan delegation that includes dozens of members of the country’s political elites and civil society left Kabul for Doha on July 6 to attend all-Afghan talks focused on ongoing peace efforts.

The delegation, which does not include Afghan government representatives, is expected to meet with Taliban officials during the two-day Intra-Afghan Dialogue Conference that begins on July 7.

The meeting, brokered by Qatar and Germany, follows separate talks between Taliban representatives and U.S. diplomats to reach an agreement that will outline the withdrawal of American and NATO troops and verifiable security guarantees from the Taliban for a post-conflict Afghanistan.

The Associated Press quotes a U.S. official as saying on July 6 that the latest round of talks with the Taliban has been “very productive.”

Speaking anonymously because of the sensitivity of the talks, the official denied that Washington sought a fixed deadline for the withdrawal of the troops from Afghanistan.

Responding to a time frame mentioned by the Taliban, the official said the U.S. delegation "definitely did not offer" an 18-month withdrawal as part of a peace deal.

The representatives of the Taliban militant group have so far refused to deal directly with the Western-backed government in Kabul.

U.S. officials have said they are seeking an agreement on a cease-fire and on full talks between the Taliban and the Afghan government before any peace deal is finalized.

Based on reporting by tolonews.com, AP, and Reuters

Original Link: https://www.rferl.org/a/delegation-from-kabul-heads-to-doha-for-all-afghan-talks/30040350.html

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