UN welcomes Afghan govt's proposal for peace talks with Taliban

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UNITED NATIONS : The United Nations mission in Afghanistan on Wednesday welcomed the Afghan Governments renewed call for unconditional peace talks with the Taliban and expressed strong support for its vision for peace.

The Government presented the proposal at an international conference aimed at creating a platform for peace talks. The UN Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA) welcomes the Afghan Governments renewed call for unconditional peace talks with the Taliban and the outlining of a framework for peace, presented at the Kabul Process II conference in the Afghan capital today, said a UNAMA press release.

The Mission strongly supports the vision for peace through intra-Afghan dialogue and urges all parties involved to engage at the earliest time, the release said. UNAMA commended the stated preparedness of Afghan authorities to discuss all issues as part of a peace process, including such key aspects as the constitution and the lifting of sanctions against persons and entities, as well as the release of prisoners.

The UN Security Council established UNAMA, a political mission, in March 2002. However, Afghanistan remains a country undergoing conflict, which threatens the sustainability of its achievements, according to the UN Department of Political Affairs (DPA). Peace negotiations between the Afghan Government and armed opposition groups are the only alternative for ending the conflict, the DPA says, noting that the region and the broader international community have a stake and a role in helping to create the conditions for peace.

The conference, held in Kabul, brought together all of Afghanistan neighbouring States, along with the five permanent members of the UN Security Council China, France, Russia, the United Kingdom and the United States as well as other parties, to establish a consensus among regional and international stakeholders on the imperative for an Afghan-led peace process. APP

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