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Afghan-Taliban peace talks to resume in January

Published: Updated:

Peace talks between the Afghan government and Taliban insurgents will resume in early January as the warring sides take a break after reaching agreement on procedural ground rules for sustaining their dialogue to end the war.

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The talks between the Afghan sides began in Qatar in September, months after the US and the Taliban struck a deal on the withdrawal of the remaining 12,000 US troops in exchange for Taliban security guarantees and a commitment to talk peace.

Members of the Afghan government delegation said on Monday they would travel back to Kabul from Doha.

“We’re taking a break for now and will be ready to discuss the agenda when talks resume,” said a senior Afghan official overseeing diplomatic communications with the Taliban.

A Taliban spokesman was not immediately available for comment.

Despite the peace process, violence in Afghanistan has not ended. There are regular clashes in various parts of the country and bomb and rocket attacks in Kabul.

Residents gather at a site after several rockets land at Khair Khana, north west of Kabul on November 21, 2020. (Wakil Kohsar/AFP)
Residents gather at a site after several rockets land at Khair Khana, north west of Kabul on November 21, 2020. (Wakil Kohsar/AFP)

Last week, the US forces carried out an air strike against Taliban insurgents to protect government forces in Kandahar province in a rare US intervention since their pact with the Taliban.

Afghan officials in the southern province told media the Taliban were planning coordinated attacks on security forces when the US military bombed them, killing more than 20 Taliban fighters.

The Taliban accused the US and the Afghan government of killing civilians in the air strike.

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