Kabul to host final talks on Taliban’s Doha office
KABUL (PAN): Afghan and Qatari officials would hold more negotiations before signing a memorandum of understanding (MoU) on the opening of Taliban’s liaison office in Doha, a foreign ministry spokesman said on Sunday.
Qatari Foreign Minister Dr. Khalid Bin Mohamed Al Attiyah would soon arrive in Kabul for talks on the subject, ministry spokesman Janan Musazai told a news conference here. However, he gave no specific dates.
During his last week’s visit to Doha, Foreign Minister Dr. Zalmai Rasoul held fruitful meetings with Qatari officials on the opening of the Taliban’s political bureau and other issues of mutual interest.
They also agreed on signing an agreement on cooperation, with Attiyah saying that peace negotiations should not be restricted to certain groups. He suggested that all parties be invited to the parleys to find a lasting solution.
Musazai said Rassoul and Qatari authorities had reached an agreement on the opening of the Taliban’s office, but more parley would be held before the accord was wrapped up.
“A formal deal on the conditions governing the office will be signed after a final round of talks between Afghan and Qatari officials in Kabul. The agreement will pave the ground for the bureau’s opening,” he continued.
The spokesman stressed the reconciliation process must be led by the Afghan government and owned by the people, with friendly countries playing a supportive role.
Rassoul highlighted the same point in Doha, saying that Afghanistan’s American friends were aware of the fact that an Afghan-led process had better prospects of success.
Musazai said Attiyah, to be accompaned by representatives of private firms that would explore investment opportunities in Afghanistan, would sign an agreement on the opening of Qatar’s embassy in Kabul.
In response to a query, he said that Afghan-US negotiations on a long-term Strategic Cooperation Document were being held in a “constructive atmosphere”.
He hoped the agreement on curb divisive night raids -- giving local authorities veto over planned operations and more say in the treatment of detainees -- would help conclude the strategic pact.
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