Abdullah Hopes Doha Meeting Will Lead To Direct Talks

Chief Executive Abdullah Abdullah on Monday welcomed the Intra-Afghan Dialogue Conference in Doha and said he hopes it will lead to direct talks between the Afghan government and the Taliban. 

“It is expected that the meeting will lead to direct talks between the two sides including the government of Afghanistan and it will lead to peace,” Abdullah said at the Council of Ministers meeting on Monday.

Critics see direct talks between the Afghan government and the Taliban as a key to moving forward the peace process.

The Intra-Afghan Dialogue Conference entered its second day on Monday where more than 50 delegates from Afghanistan and 17 representatives of the Taliban have attended on their “personal capacity” to discuss issues around the future of the peace efforts in the war-ravaged country.

The first day of the meeting was focused on wide-ranging discussions about the women’s rights, the freedom of the press, civilians protection, ceasefire, foreign forces withdrawal, the post-peace deal government, and other relevant issues, according to few delegates interviewed by TOLOnews.

Talking reporters, a spokesman of the Taliban, Suhail Shaheen, said the group is ready to entering intra-Afghan issues, including a ceasefire, when a timetable on foreign forces withdrawal from Afghanistan is announced.

The meeting was also welcomed by the Presidential Palace.

“It can be evaluated as progress [in the peace process] and an opportunity for those Afghans who are present there in the meeting to share their ideas with each other,” President Ghani’s spokesman Sediq Sediqqi told.

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