Editor in Chief: Moh. Reza Huwaida Tuesday, January 22nd, 2019

Jeddah Talks on Afghan Peace Imminent

Jeddah Talks on  Afghan Peace Imminent

KABUL - The next round of Afghan peace talks will be held in the next few days, probably in January, in Saudi Arabia’s Jeddah city between US officials and Taliban representatives.
The Afghan government has said they will send a delegation to this meeting.
Taliban in the meantime have said in a statement that the Jeddah meeting is a continuation of Abu Dhabi talks and that they will not meet the Afghan government delegation and will hold talks only with US officials.
While Taliban’s refusal in meeting the Afghan government delegation has been faced with criticism that government has been sidelined, the Chief Executive Officer’s office said they are hopeful that a condition for peace will be provided and the process will be led by the Afghans.
“Our international partners are trying to facilitate the condition for talks, to facilitate conditions for direct talks between government and anti-government armed groups, but any talks and negotiations will be Afghan-led and Afghan-owned,” Omid Maisam, deputy spokesman of Chief Executive Officer said.
“It is America that has guaranteed the peace talks. Taliban are at war with us and we are at war with Taliban. We do not have expectations from Taliban,” Khalid Pashton, an MP said.
Earlier this month, Taliban and the US officials held a two-day meeting in Abu Dhabi, and the Taliban refused to meet the Afghan government delegation who were there, hoping to hold close talks with the group.
“We accept that government’s capability in the peace process is very weak and cannot make a political consensus. But there is no option, we should enter the government in the process,” Baryalai Helalai, a military affairs analyst said.
In the meantime, Pakistan Foreign Minister, Shah Mahmood Qureshi, on Monday went to Qatar to hold talks with Qatar officials over the Afghan peace talks.
Qureshi’s visit to Qatar takes place amid a phone conversation on Saturday between the US State Secretary and Qatar's Foreign Minister on Afghan peace. 
“Pakistan, with a regional approach, has decided to exchange views with its friend nations about the situation in the region and the Afghanistan issue and gain their trust. Thus, I went to Kabul, Tehran, Beijing and Moscow,” said Qureshi.
“Pakistan’s efforts raises hope,” political affairs analyst Assadullah Walwaji said.
Alongside, Pakistani media have reported that Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan will visit Qatar and Turkey also to hold talks with officials of these countries on important issues, including Afghan peace.  (Tolo news)