New developments Reported over Intra Afghan peace talks

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New developments Reported over Intra Afghan peace talks

The Afghan government and the Taliban formed on Sunday working groups to take dialogue forward, a day after they began their first direct talks to end nearly two decades of fighting.

Abdullah Abdullah, chairman of the High Council of National Reconciliation of Afghanistan, told a press conference in Doha, Qatar that both Kabul and the insurgents could emerge as "winners" by keeping the door of negotiations open.

He argued for a “significant” reduction in violence, followed by a temporary, and an eventual permanent cease-fire.

“It would be miscalculation to think that causing more casualties would make people more hopeful about peace. Increasing the casualties is not a solution,” he said.

The Afghan government’s top negotiator, Mohammad Massoum Stanikzai, said the two sides have reached "some primary agreements" on moving to agenda-setting and principles for in-depth negotiations.

Meanwhile, Taliban spokesperson Mohammad Naeem said the group's deputy chief, Mullah Baradar, and chief negotiator Mawlawi Abdul Hakeem Haqqani, met Emir of Qatar Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani to discuss the peace process.