Taliban, Afghan officials gather in Doha

Move seeks to open negotiations for end to more than a decade of conflict.

Taliban, Afghan officials gather in Doha

World Bulletin / News Desk 

Warring Taliban and Afghan government officials are preparing to meet in the capital of Qatar on Sunday in a bid to relaunch efforts to open talks aimed at ending more than a decade of bloody conflict which began with the U.S. invasion of Afghanistan in 2002, officials and Afghan media have said.

Attaullah Ludin, the deputy chief of Afghanistan High Peace Council, told local media on Saturday that Afghan officials, whose names have not yet been disclosed, will meet Taliban leaders in Doha on Sunday and Monday.

Taliban spokesperson Zabihullah Mujahid confirmed an eight-member Taliban delegation will attend the event, which is being organized by international peace initiators Pugwash.

A 20-member Afghan delegation left for Doha on Saturday, officials said.

The talks are seen as a follow-on from a reported meeting held between the two sides in Beijing in February, hosted by the Chinese government.

Representatives from neighboring Pakistan and organizations including the Hizb-e-Islami group will also participate in the much-publicized talks which have raised expectations for peace with approval come from Islamabad in February.

Unlike former President Hamid Karzai, incumbent Afghan President Ashraf Ghani has attempted to forge good relations with Islamabad and persuade Pakistan’s civilian and military leadership to support the reconciliation process which also has US backing.

Last Mod: 03 Mayıs 2015, 09:57
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