18:28 GMT30 July 2021
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    WASHINGTON (Sputnik) - The Taliban lacks any justification to launch a new spring offensive as Afghan President Ashraf Ghani is trying to revive the peace process, US Acting Secretary of State John Sullivan said in a statement.

    "President Ghani recently extended an historic invitation for the Taliban to join a peace process, and there is no justification for the announcement of a new offensive," Sullivan said on Wednesday. "There is no need for a new ‘fighting season.’"

    The Taliban in a statement earlier in the day announced it was launching its annual springtime military offensive, Afghanistan’s Tolo News reported.

    Sullivan also said the announcement "affirms the Taliban’s responsibility for the insecurity that destroys the lives of thousands of Afghans each year."

    The Taliban radical movement has rejected the offer of Ghani’s to participate in Afghanistan’s parliamentary and local elections, saying that only those who are approved by the United States could gain power in the country, according to local media.

    The radical group also urged the Afghan nation to boycott the elections and noted that the country is "occupied" by foreign forces.

    Ghani unveiled his plans to launch peace talks with the Taliban, starting with a truce and possibly ending with the movement's recognition as a party and their participation in elections in February. In return, the Taliban would have to recognize the current Kabul government and constitution.


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