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Khalilzad Urges Taliban to Agree to Ceasefire

15 Apr 2019 Ariana News

The U.S. Special Representative for Afghanistan Reconciliation Zalmay Khalilzad on Monday Urged the Taliban militants to agree a ceasefire as an effort for initiating an Intra-Afghan dialogue to discuss a political settlement to end the long-term war in the country.

“The quickest way to prevent casualties is to agree to a ceasefire. Taliban senior leadership should allow their representatives to come to the table and discuss. I will continue to press the case,” Khalilzad said on a Twitter post.

Khalilzad said the reason that the U.S. entered peace talks is that “more war is not the answer.”

“During talks, I have proposed ways to reduce violence. By refusing to work with us to end the killing, the Talibs are prolonging it. Let Afghan people judge whether Talib statements encouraging more violence is way forward,” he tweeted.

Khalilzad reiterated that the Afghan people “deserve” and want a comprehensive “ceasefire” and negotiations leading to a lasting peace. “The US stands with them,” he said.

“We did not impose this war. Afghanistan has been at war for decades, at times with each other. Tens of thousands of innocent civilians have died. Rather than another season of fighting, Afghans are demanding a new way forward,” he noted.

Zalmay Khalilzad has held five rounds of talks with the Taliban on the Afghan peace aimed at finding a solution to the 17-year conflict in the war-weary country.

The Afghan government is also expected to form a negotiation team who will participate in talks with the Taliban representatives in Doha between 19 and 21 April.

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