An Afghan official says Doha talks will be led by Abdullah Abdullah, with former President Hamid Karzai among the delegates.
A powerful Afghan government delegation, which will include the head of the country’s reconciliation council, will meet with the Taliban in Qatar to begin a stalled peace process, according to an Afghan official, according to a report by The Associated News Agency Press. .
The Taliban are expected to bring their senior leaders to the table when the two sides meet, possibly on Friday, said the official, who spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not allowed to report to reporters on Tuesday.
The Taliban hold a political position in the Qatari capital Doha.
The renewed push to reach a peace agreement comes when the United States ends its military presence in Afghanistan.
Outgoing U.S. Commander-in-Chief Scott Miller recently warned that the escalation of violence is severely damaging Afghanistan’s chances of finding a peaceful end to decades of war.
At the same time, Taliban fighters have taken control of large swathes of the country. Although the exact number of Taliban-controlled districts is unknown, they are now believed to rule in more than a third of Afghanistan’s 421 districts and district centers.
Several districts are strategic and border on Iran, Uzbekistan and Tajikistan.
The increase has also exposed weaknesses in the Afghan National Defense and Security Forces. Many districts fell without a fight and more than 1,000 soldiers fled to Tajikistan.
There have been repeated reports of troops not having been supplied or left without reinforcements. They are often overtaken and overtaken by their Taliban opponents.
The Doha talks will be led by senior government official Abdullah Abdullah, who heads Afghanistan’s reconciliation council. Former President Hamid Karzai is also expected to be part of the delegates.
Negotiations are aimed at ending the violence that has steadily increased since the United States signed an agreement with the Taliban in February last year.
Karzai called on the government not to miss the opportunity and to move towards peace.
He also expressed hope that someday Afghanistan would have a woman as president and urged women to stay in their jobs and continue their training.
“This country has it all, young people, educated people,” he said. “I call on the younger generation not to leave your country, stay here … You have to trust your country, peace will come.”
Thousands of Afghans are trying to leave the country amid growing anxiety about the future.
In a new signal of concern for what awaits us, France urged its citizens to leave Afghanistan and announced that it would organize a special flight on Saturday to evacuate them from Kabul. There was no indication that the French embassy was closed.
Australia has closed its embassy.
Although the United States has reduced the size of its embassy staff, it says it has no plans to evacuate and announced that its visa section had reopened after it was temporarily closed due to an outbreak of COVID- 19.
Also on Tuesday, an explosion shook the capital of Kabul, killing four people and injuring 11 others, according to police spokesman Ferdaws Faramaz.
No one was immediately responsible for the attack. The Taliban and the government accuse each other of attacking the capital.