No Afghan govt, Taliban contact group meetings since 2 days

Kabul/Doha, Sep 26 : The contact group meetings aimed at reaching an agreement about the procedural rules intended for the formal talks between the Afghan government and the Taliban, have been stalled for two days over a number of disputed points, a media report said.

One of the major disputed point is the militant group demanding the recognition of the US-Taliban agreement as the ‘mother deal’ underlying the Afghan peace negotiations, the TOLO News report said on Friday night.

According to reports, the government team has recommended four options to the US-Taliban agreement.

In the first option, the government has said that the terms of the US-Taliban agreement could be accepted as underlying the talks, while neither the deal nor the declarations of Kabul with Washington and the NATO will be recognized as having any authority.

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It added that the negotiations will move forward based on the decisions of the consultative Loya Jirga and its declarations.

However, there were no confirmations about when the two sides will resume their discussions on the disputed points.

“If they (Taliban) are not able to come up with a convincing agenda in the intra-Afghan meeting, then they create a gap in order to seek new views from their backers about the agenda of the talks,” TOLO News quoted MP Sayed Zahir Masroor as saying.

Assadullah Saadati, the deputy head of High Council of National Reconciliation for Political Affairs, warned that divisive statements by the negotiating parties can be perilous for the country.

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The two sides teams formed the “contact groups” on the opening day of the Intra-Afghan talks on September 12.

The contact groups have held five meetings so far to discuss rules and regulations as well as the agenda of the negotiations.

The regulations for the talks initially had 23 articles and were later reduced to 20 which might still change in due course of time.

–IANS
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