US criticises Taliban, Pakistan over peace talks

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KABUL: The United States has said the Taliban’s failure to engage in talks to end Afghanistan’s nearly 17-year conflict is “unacceptable” and called on Pakistan to exert more pressure on the militants.

US envoy Alice Wells made the remarks during a visit to Kabul on Saturday, two weeks after an unprecedented ceasefire triggered spontaneous street celebrations involving Taliban fighters and security forces.

“I think it [the ceasefire reaction] creates this impulse for everyone to renew their efforts to find a negotiated political solution,” Ms Wells, the principal deputy assistant secretary for the State Department’s Bureau of South and Central Asian Affairs, told reporters in remarks embargoed until Sunday.

Alice Wells says Islamabad should do more to bring militants to negotiating table

“Increasingly I think it’s becoming simply unacceptable for the Taliban not to negotiate.” The Taliban have so far ignored President Ashraf Ghani’s offer of peace negotiations. Instead, they have insisted on direct talks with the United States, which Washington has repeatedly refused.

Categories: Asia,Top story

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