Afghan rivals agree to meet again after inconclusive Doha talks

July 19, 2021 - 20:28

Delegations from the Afghan government and the Taliban said in a joint statement on Sunday that they will meet again and plan to expedite peace negotiations after two days of inconclusive talks in Doha.

The negotiators from the rival sides, who have been in Doha since Saturday, said, “the two sides committed to continue negotiations at a high level until a settlement is reached”.

“We will work to provide humanitarian assistance throughout Afghanistan,” the statement added.

Reporting from Doha, Al Jazeera’s Osama bin Javaid said: “A hotly contested draft was put forth by both sides where they finally agreed to talk to each other and to speed up talks. They agreed that the level of negotiations will be expedited.”

Javaid added that the specifics, however, were not discussed.

Foreign missions in Kabul issue joint call for Taliban ceasefire

Meanwhile, fifteen diplomatic missions and the NATO representative in Kabul have joined hands to urge the Taliban to halt military offensives across Afghanistan, just hours after a peace meeting in Doha failed to agree on a ceasefire.

A senior delegation of Afghan leaders met the Taliban’s political leadership in the Qatari capital over the last two days, but a Taliban statement issued late on Sunday made no mention of a halt to Afghanistan’s rising violence.

The joint statement was supported by Australia, Canada, the Czech Republic, Denmark, the European Union delegation, Finland, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Korea, the Netherlands, Spain, Sweden, Britain and the United States and NATO’s senior civilian representative.
“The Taliban’s offensive is in direct contradiction to their claim to support a negotiated settlement,” said the joint statement.

“It has resulted in loss of innocent Afghan lives, including through continued targeted killings, displacement of the civilian population, looting and burning of buildings, destruction of vital infrastructure, and damage to communication networks.”

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