New developments reported over crucial Afghanistan peace talks

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New developments reported over crucial Afghanistan peace talks

ISLAMABAD - New developments reported over crucial Afghanistan peace talks.

Afghanistan’s President Ashraf Ghani is meeting with top US and NATO officials on Friday in Germany at the Munich Security Conference, according to tweets from the Presidential Palace.

This comes as events in the US-Taliban peace negotiation talks in Doha appear to accelerate, following an announcement earlier this week of US President Trump’s “conditional” approval of a peace plan that would apparently lead to the withdrawal of US troops, and Thursday’s statement by Defense Secretary Mark Esper of a seven-day reduction in violence agreement with the Taliban, made in Doha, Qatar, TOLO News has reported.

Ghani’s spokesman tweeted that a meeting is underway in Munich between President Ghani, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, US Defense Secretary Mark Esper, the US Special Representative for Afghanistan Reconciliation Zalmay Khalilzad and General Scott Miller, the commander of US forces in Afghanistan.

[image: Ghani’s spokesman tweeted that a meeting is underway in Munich between President Ghani, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, US Defense Secretary Mark Esper, the US Special Representative for Afghanistan Reconciliation Zalmay Khalilzad and General Scott Miller, the commander of US forces in Afghanistan.]

“Today I’ll meet President Ghani and we’ll discuss efforts to find a peaceful negotiated solution to the conflict in Afghanistan.

NATO currently has around 16,000 troops in Afghanistan and we are ready to adjust that force level if the Taliban is able to demonstrate the real will and ability to reduce violence,” NATO chief Jens Stoltenberg told reporters in Munich Germany on Friday.

“Important discussion with President Ashraf Ghani about the way forward in Afghanistan. NATO Allies & partners remain firmly committed to create the conditions for a sustainable peace.

The Taliban need to show the will & ability to reduce violence & negotiate in good faith,” NATO chief tweeted.