US special envoy for Afghan peace visits Kabul

Kabul, Apr 2 (IANS) | Publish Date: 4/2/2019 1:02:41 PM IST

US special envoy for peace and reconciliation in Afghanistan Zalmay Khalilzad visited the Afghan capital and exchanged views with the country’s leadership, the media reported on Tuesday.

As part of his multi-nation trip to facilitate intra-Afghan peace talks, Khalilzad arrived in Kabul on Monday and immediately started meeting Afghan officials, Daily Outlook Afghanistan reported.

Khalilzad, the Afghanistan-born US veteran diplomat, met President Mohammad Ashraf Ghani, Chief Executive Abdullah Abdullah and several other politicians. 

Afghan Presidential Palace in a short statement released here on Tuesday said that President Ghani and Khalilzad exchanged views on the situation in Afghanistan and the ongoing peace process and added that the outcome of the peace talks would be shared with the people.

The Taliban has so far rejected to sit on negotiating table with the Afghan government, saying the militant group won’t talk to Kabul administration in the presence of foreign military forces in the country.

Khalilzad, who ended his fifth round of marathon talks with the Taliban representatives in Doha a couple of weeks ago and resumed his peace mission on March 25 with visit to London and Brussels, is expected to visit Pakistan, Uzbekistan, Jordan and Qatar after ending his meetings with Afghan leaders.

Khalilzad’s visit to Afghanistan took place with Taliban increasing activities as it has overrun the strategically important Arghanchkhaw district in adakhshan province, tightened the noose around Bala Murghab district in Badghis province and other parts of the country.

Over 100 people including militants, security personnel and civilians were reportedly killed over the past one week.

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