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US envoy Zalmay Khalilzad: Kabul, Taliban should negotiate formation of new govt

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KABUL: Zalmay Khalilzad, the US special envoy for peace in Afghanistan, says the Afghan government and the Taliban should discuss the architecture of a new government.

According to reports, Khalilzad said on Tuesday that both the Afghan government and the Taliban should not repeat the mistakes made after the Soviet withdrawal in Afghanistan.

“At that time, after a major breakthrough, the Soviet withdrawal, a major civil war replaced it. When it comes to replace it with a political agreement and build a new government that is acceptable to all,” he said.

But Mr. Khalilzad did not elaborate on the formula for what he said was the creation of a new government in Afghanistan.

Earlier, the Associated Press quoted Suhail Shaheen, a member of the Taliban’s negotiating team, as saying that a new government should emerge through negotiations.

The report said that Shaheen had called for the removal of Afghan President Ashraf Ghani from power.

But Khalilzad has said that at first a formula should be agreed upon. “First a formula must be agreed upon, then the organization that will implement it, and then placement of individuals must be agreed upon,” he said.

Khalilzad warned that if the Afghans did not reach a political agreement, the country could face an endless war.

Ali Amiri, a political affairs expert and university professor, told RFE / RL that forming an interim government in which all disputes can be resolved has almost a fixed formula.

“Because of this, Mr. Khalilzad did not discuss the formula itself that the formation of the government is not agreed upon,” he argued.

The White House said Biden continued to insist on his country’s commitment to supporting Afghan forces.

Washington has pledged $ 3.3 billion in security and defense assistance and nearly $ 300 million in civilian assistance to Afghanistan.

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