Young Journalists ClubUS Special Representative for Afghanistan Reconciliation Zalmay Khalilzad arrived in the Afghan capital Kabul on Wednesday to discuss suggestions for the resumption of peace negotiations with the militant group, according to a State Department statement.
He met with Afghanistan’s President Ashraf Ghani and other Afghan leaders to follow up on Trump’s November 28 top-secret visit to US troops in the East Asian state, where the American president claimed Taliban wanted to “make a deal.” In Kabul, Trump also supported “accelerated efforts to get all parties to intra-Afghan negotiations.”
The Taliban initially said it was “too early” to speak of resuming the talks, but later said they “were ready” to rejoin the diplomatic process with the US in Qatar.
In Kabul, Khalilzad and Ghani exchanged views on the peace process, including “the prospect for a ceasefire as a result of a peace agreement and the issue of Taliban’s sanctuaries outside Afghanistan,” Afghanistan’s presidency office tweeted.
The US president ended yearlong talks with the Taliban in September, when an agreement appeared imminent. He said at the time that the decision to end the talks was in response to a deadly bomb attack by the militants that killed 12 people in the Afghan capital on September 5, including an American soldier.