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Washington still hopes Taliban cave to violence-reduction demand

AT News

KABUL: The United States still hopes that Taliban leadership agree on the violence reduction in Afghanistan demanded by the country’s chief negotiator Zalmay Khalilzad.

Khalilzad who has met Taliban representatives for 10 rounds of talk since 2018, has offered ceasefire and reduction of violence before reaching a deal with the militants.

Officials in Taliban’s political office in Qatar have told the Daily Times that their leader Mullah Haibatullah Akhondzada was consulting the leadership council whether to agree on Khalilzad’s demands.

Sources familiar with the peace negotiations said Tuesday that Khalilzad was still hopeful that Taliban accept the violence reduction.

The last round of talks was halted early December and both Khalilzad and Taliban left Qatar to consult their leaderships on the deal finalizing. Taliban seem not to be ready yet to resume talks.

There are differences at home over the peace efforts with government having problems with political leaders as well as differences inside the government.

President Ghani turns down reduction of violence as not enough, emphasizing on the ceasefire, while chief executive and Ghani’s main contender in presidential race Abdullah believes that reduction of violence could also create trust building and lead to negotiations.

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