14:13 GMT +318 October 2019
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    US Ready to Talk With Both Afghan Gov’t, Taliban to Settle Peace - State Dept.

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    NEW YORK (Sputnik) - The United States is ready to engage in negotiations with both the Afghan government and the Taliban in order to help Afghanistan find a peaceful settlement, Alice Wells, US Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary for the Bureau of South and Central Asia Region, said on Friday.

    In July, US media reported American officials held first-ever direct talks with representatives of Taliban in Qatar.

    "The US administration is prepared to engage and participate in negotiations with both Taliban and the Afghan government," Wells told reporters during a press briefing. "It is imperative that the Taliban and the Afghan government work together towards a peace solution. No political settlement can be negotiated over the heads of the Afghan people, and no political settlement can be negotiated only between certain elements," she added.

    READ MORE: Afghanistan Ready for Direct Dialogue With Taliban Under Constitution — Envoy

    In August, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said the time for peace in Afghanistan has come and Washington was ready to facilitate dialogue between the parties to the conflict.

    Afghanistan has long been in a state of turmoil, with the government fighting the Daesh* terror group, outlawed in Russia, and the Taliban insurgency. In August, the Taliban rejected Afghan President Ashraf Ghani's offer for a three-month ceasefire.

    *Daesh — a terror group, banned in numerous countries, including Russia


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