Afghan leaders optimistic for US, Taliban peace deal
Afghan leaders, Taliban should chalk out future strategy for sustainable peace
Afghanistan's political and religious leaders are optimistic for a fruitful outcome of ongoing peace talks between the Taliban and the U.S.
Mohammad Karim Khalili, head of the Afghan High Peace Council, told Anadolu Agency they are satisfied by the progress made in the talks.
He had gathered along with senior Afghan leaders on Saturday in the resort town of Bhurban, near Pakistan's capital Islamabad, for a series of meetings with top Pakistani government officials.
"I am very hopeful that these talks would pave way for peace in our country and so far both sides have made good progress," Khalili said.
"All Afghan leaders have agreed to sit with the Taliban and chalk out a future strategy for our country to bring sustainable peace," he added.
The 7th round of peace talks between the Taliban and the U.S. will start on June 29 in Doha, Qatar.
He reiterated that Turkey could play a significant role in restoring peace in Afghanistan.
"Turkey is a very important country in the Islamic world and Turkey's role is significant for us," Khalili said.
Pir Hamid Gilani, leader of the National Islamic Front of Afghanistan, said there is a consensus between the Afghan leadership "to work together for peace in our country".
U.S. President Donald Trump is also sincere in ending the war in Afghanistan and withdrawing troops, he observed.
Anwar-ul-Haq Hadi, former Afghan finance minister, said Washington should not pull out its troops from Afghanistan without a peace deal.
"I believe the U.S. should refrain from withdrawing its troops in a way that the Afghan government collapses, but only after a deal," he said.
After a 17-year war in Afghanistan, the U.S. is looking for a peaceful way out of the country, mostly by engaging the Taliban in talks.
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