The Kabul Times.

US trying to convince all parties in Afghan Peace Process: Pompeo


Testifying before House of Representatives Foreign Affairs Committee, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said that the issue of troop reduction is Afghanistan is depended to the outcome of peace talks between the United States and the Taliban.
He said Washington is trying to convince all parties involved in the conflict in Afghanistan to come together and see if there is an agreement to overcome violence in the country.
“We are trying to convince all the parties, the government of national unity including President Ghani, other Afghan actors and the Taliban to come together to see if we can find a way to reduce the violence. When we do that, we will be able to reduce not only the American forces there, but importantly the NATO forces that are located inside and working together alongside us inside of Afghanistan,” said Pompeo. 
“Our negotiations are with every element inside Afghanistan aimed to getting there to be Afghan-led conversation, that is the mission ambassador Khalilzad is engaged in,” said Pompeo.
Media reports suggest that President Ashraf Ghani in a meeting with a Qatari delegation proposed a delay in the second round of talks between Afghan politicians and Taliban. He suggested that the meeting should be held after the consultative Jirga on peace which is scheduled for April 29.
“There is possibility that those who were absent in Moscow meeting will be present in Doha meeting,” said political analyst Nazar Mohammad Mutmaen.
Other sources said that former President Hamid Karzai will meet President Ghani next week to ask him to introduce a delegation from the Afghan government for Doha meeting.
“Qatar meeting will be held in an appropriate time. We hope that delegates form the Afghan government will attend the meeting,” said Ahmadullah Alizai, a political commentator from Kabul.
This comes as US Special Envoy Zalmay Khalilzad has started another multi-nation trip on Afghan peace.
In his visit to Kabul, the US Department of State said in a statement, Khalilzad will consult with the Afghan government and other Afghans about the status of US talks with the Taliban, encourage efforts to form an inclusive negotiating team, and discuss next steps in intra-Afghan discussions and negotiations.
The Kabul Times

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The Kabul Times.