Kabul, Taliban Agree to Continue Talks, Start Countrywide Humanitarian Aid Programme
18:10 GMT 18.07.2021 (Updated: 19:02 GMT 18.07.2021)
© AFP 2022 / KARIM JAAFAR(L to R) The head of Afghanistan's High Council for National Reconciliation Abdullah Abdullah, Qatar's envoy on counter-terrorism Mutlaq al-Qahtani, and the leader of the Taliban negotiating team Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar present the final declaration of the peace talks between the Afghan government and the Taliban in Qatar's capital Doha on July 18, 2021
This comes amid a recent surge in violence in Afghanistan following the start of the withdrawal of international troops from the country in line with an agreement reached between the Taliban* and the US in Doha last year.
The delegations of the Afghan government and the Taliban issued a joint statement to say that they will continue high-level negotiations to reach an agreement.
"The negotiating sides have agreed to continue the high-level talks until an acceptable solution is reached and hold such meetings in the future. The leaders of the delegations have tasked their negotiating teams with speeding up the talks," the communique, provided at a press conference by Chairman of the High Council for National Reconciliation Abdullah Abdullah, read.
They also said that a compromise is needed that would be based on the principles of Islam and would benefit all Afghans.
Both sides stated that the civilian infrastructure must not be damaged. They also agreed on the need to avoid civilian casualties and secure deliveries of humanitarian aid to all regions of the country.
The talks are taking place amid a surge in violence in Afghanistan following the withdrawal of US and NATO troops from the country in accordance with the agreement previously reached between Washington and the Taliban.
Earlier this year, US President Joe Biden announced that his country would gradually withdraw its troops from Afghanistan by 1 September, the 20th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks.