#AceNewsReport – Sept.24: U.S.-brokered peace talks between the Afghan government and the Taliban – which refuses to recognise the government’s authority – started on September 12 in Doha, Qatar. In February, the U.S. agreed to gradually withdraw troops from Afghanistan if the two sides held peace talks. The agreement stipulated that the two parties would first participate in a mutual prisoner swap to build trust before negotiations:
Final Phase of 400-Hard-Core- #Taliban Prisoners Freed for Peace Talks Already ‘Returned to Battlefield’
In August: Afghan President Ashraf Ghani released 400 “hardcore” Taliban prisoners as part of the final phase of the prisoner swap, which saw a total of 5,000 Taliban terrorists freed. Ghani initially refused to release the 400 “hardcore” jihadis, calling their crimes “very serious.” He ultimately deferred the decision to an Afghan tribal council, which voted to release the last batch of terrorists to begin long-stalled peace negotiations: Now, just two weeks into the peace talks, a number of the freed Taliban prisoners have already returned to fighting, according to the head of Afghanistan’s High Council for National Reconciliation, Abdullah Abdullah.
“I do know that some have returned to the battlefield, which is a violation of the agreement that they had made,” Abdullah revealed in an online conference with the U.S. Council on Foreign Relations on Tuesday: The Taliban has continued to attack government security forces in Afghanistan during the peace talks. On Monday, Afghanistan recorded its deadliest day since negotiations began, with at least 57 Afghan security force members killed in Taliban attacks across the country……………………..“Unfortunately, so far, the level of violence is very high and to a level that is not acceptable for the people,” Abdullah said of the ongoing Taliban attacks……………….“I repeat my call to the Taliban themselves and also to all partners who have any leverage over the Taliban to press on that point,” he urged.
Zalmay Khalilzad, the United States’ Special Representative for Afghanistan, joined Abdullah in condemning the violence on Tuesday: “By any measure, current levels of violence are too high,” Khalilzad told a U.S. House of Representatives hearing. “We know that reductions [in violence] are possible,” he added.
#AceNewsDesk report …………Published: Sept.24: 2020:
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