World powers renew calls for Taliban peace talks
Taliban fighters carry weapons during a march. (AFP/File)
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The United States, Afghanistan, Pakistan and China called on the Taliban to take part in early talks with the Afghan government to end ongoing violence in the region.
Member nations of the Quadrilateral Coordination Group said the second round of talks Monday made progress to a roadmap that will initiate peaceful negotiations for an end to the 15-year Afghan war. The group will hold its next meeting in Islamabad on Feb. 6.
"The roadmap aims to set specific measures that are necessary for creating a conducive environment for the commencement of Afghan-led, Afghan-owned peace talks between representatives of the government of Afghanistan and representatives of Taliban groups aimed at reduction of violence and establishing lasting peace in Afghanistan and the region," the group said.
The group met for the first time on Jan. 11 to "end to the senseless violence against the Afghan people." Earlier rounds of peace talks came to a halt after the July announcement of the death of leader Mullah Omar.
By Amy R. Connolly
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