Taliban confirm talks with US on Afghan conflict

–Afghan Taliban spokesman says no settlement was reached on ‘any subject’ in talks held with American officers in Qatar

KABUL: The Taliban held talks with US officers in Qatar on ending the Afghan battle final week, the militants confirmed Monday, however mentioned no settlement was reached on “any subject”.

The assertion comes a day after US envoy Zalmay Khalilzad expressed hopes in Kabul {that a} peace deal might be struck earlier than the Afghan presidential election, scheduled for April 20 subsequent 12 months.

Khalilzad was within the Afghan capital after the second spherical of regional conferences with prime authorities officers to coordinate efforts on ending the 17-year warfare.

Senior Taliban officers met with a “high-ranking” US delegation in Qatar on November 14, 15 and 16, the militant group mentioned in a WhatsApp message, with out mentioning Khalilzad.

The Taliban has a political workplace within the capital Doha that serves as a de facto embassy.

“These had been preliminary talks and no settlement was reached on any subject,” spokesman Zabiullah Mujahid mentioned.

“We need to reassure our Mujahideen and Muslim nation that the representatives of the Islamic Emirate won’t ever comply with something that doesn’t adhere to Islamic rules.”

The second Taliban-US assembly in as many months come because the militants step up assaults on beleaguered Afghan safety forces, that are struggling an unprecedented degree of casualties.

The loss of life toll amongst Afghan troopers and police is nearing 30,000 for the reason that begin of 2015, Afghan President Ashraf Ghani revealed this month, a determine far increased than something beforehand acknowledged.

In a latest report, the US Particular Inspector Basic for Afghanistan Reconstruction (SIGAR) cited the NATO mission in Kabul as saying this summer time’s toll had been worse than ever for Afghan forces.

Khalilzad advised reporters on Sunday that he recognised the “complexity” of the battle, however insisted he needed to “make as a lot progress as doable as quickly as doable”.

His feedback underscore an obvious growing sense of urgency within the White Home and amongst American diplomats for a peace deal to be performed rapidly.

Washington is dealing with competitors from Moscow, which this month hosted a global gathering on Afghanistan that was attended by the Taliban.

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