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US: Khalilzad begins trip to discuss Afghan peace

Zalmay Khalilzad to visit Kabul, New Delhi, Islamabad, Doha, Moscow, London after landmark meeting canceled in Qatar

Umar Farooq   | 22.04.2019
US: Khalilzad begins trip to discuss Afghan peace

WASHINGTON

The U.S. special representative for Afghan reconciliation is traveling to Afghanistan, India, Pakistan, Qatar, Russia, and the United Kingdom, as a part of Washington's effort to "facilitate a political settlement" in Afghanistan.

"In Kabul, Special Representative [Zalmay] Khalilzad will consult with the Afghan government and other Afghans to encourage all parties to work towards intra-Afghan dialogue and negotiations to determine a final peace settlement," the State Department said in a statement.

He will then travel to New Delhi, Islamabad, Moscow and London, where he will work to build support for the Afghan peace process amongst the international community.

He will also be in Doha to help negotiate with the Taliban to urge participation in the peace process.

In February, the Taliban and the U.S. said after a marathon round of talks in Qatar that a draft agreement was reached for the eventual withdrawal of troops and guarantees Afghanistan would not be allowed to turn into hub of terrorism.

Last week, more than 200 Afghan politicians and civil society representatives were set to meet the Taliban in the Qatari capital for what was set to be a momentous development in the political settlement endorsed by Kabul and Washington.

But the Taliban opposed and mocked the large size of the peace delegation saying the conference in Doha is not a "wedding party" ultimately leading to the conference’s cancellation.

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