KABUL (SW) – The sixth round of talks between the U.S. and Taliban is underway in the Qatari capital, Doha.
A number of former Taliban-era officials told Salam Watandar that apart from a timetable for the withdrawal of foreign troops from Afghanistan other points include mentioning the ‘Islamic Emirate’ as the Taliban’s official title, matters related to fight against terrorism and the issue of Daesh’s presence in Afghanistan.
Waheed Mujda, one such former official, said talks are underway to refer to the Taliban as ‘Islamic Emirate’ in the proposed peace agreement. He said further debates are expected over the definition of the ‘Islamic Emirate’ in the proposed intra-Afghan dialogue.
He added the Taliban demand the foreign troops to leave Afghanistan between six to nine months, but the U.S. is not inclined towards acknowledging this demand.
Another former Taliban-era official, Syed Akbar Aagha, said progress has been made in talks between Zalmay Khalilzad, U.S. Special Representative for Afghanistan Reconciliation, and the Taliban in Qatar. He added the Taliban insist no further agreements can be reached until a final deal is brokered over the withdrawal of foreign troops and guarantees given not to turn Afghanistan into bastion for international terrorism.
Separately, spokesman for the High Peace Council, Assadullah Zayeri, told SW that the talks in Doha also covered issues related to ceasefire and intra-Afghan dialogue for peace.
Earlier this week, Khalilzad urged the Taliban to put down arms, stop the violence and embrace peace. He said this in a series of tweets from the Qatari capital, Doha where he is engaged in sixth round of talks with the Taliban. “Back in Doha for talks. In our opening session, I underscored to the Talibs that the Afghan people, who are their brothers & sisters, want this war to end. It is time to put down arms, stop the violence, & embrace peace”.