07:08 GMT13 August 2020
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    KABUL (Sputnik) - The Taliban* are not going to stop hostilities before intra-Afghan talks, viewing any calls for a ceasefire in absence of negotiations as "illogical," the radical movement's spokesman said on Sunday.

    "Our stance: Implementation of Doha Agreement & start of intra-Afghan negotiations are necessary so we can work towards de-escalation & end of the war. If anyone seeks ceasefire before talks then such is illogical. War is raging precisely b/c we have yet to find an alternative", Zabihullah Mujahid wrote on Twitter.

    He accused the government of creating "obstacles" to negotiations.

    "The prisoner exchange process must be completed and intra-Afghan negotiations launched immediately. This is the most correct and reasonable path towards a resolution", the spokesman added.
    Members of the Taliban handover their weapons and join in the Afghan government's reconciliation and reintegration program in Jalalabad, Afghanistan June 25, 2020.
    © REUTERS / Parwiz Parwiz
    Members of the Taliban handover their weapons and join in the Afghan government's reconciliation and reintegration program in Jalalabad, Afghanistan June 25, 2020.

    Earlier in the day, Afghan presidential spokesman Sediq Sediqqi urged the Taliban to stop violence and genuinely join a peace process.

    Though the United States and the Taliban struck their long-awaited peace deal in late February, clashes between the government forces and the radical movement continue. Direct intra-Afghan talks were initially scheduled to commence in March but were pushed back due to disagreements over the mutual release of prisoners.

    * Taliban is a radical movement, banned in Russia

    Tags:
    Afghan peace talks, peace talks, peace talks, Taliban, Taliban, Afghanistan
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