Taliban negotiation in Pakistan postponed

Taliban negotiation in Pakistan postponed

Taliban negotiation in Pakistan postponed

Representatives of the Taliban attend worldwide talks on Afghanistan in Moscow on November 9, 2018.

The Taliban have called off meetings in Pakistan, including a first audience with a national leader since their regime was ousted from power in Afghanistan in 2001, after the Afghan government protested to the United Nations Security Council that leaders of the insurgent group were violating travel restrictions under worldwide sanctions.

The statement said that Taliban was prepared for the talks but most negotiators the group could not attend the meeting as they are on the USA and United Nations blacklist.

Officials said Sunday that the Ministry of Foreign Affairs has lodged complained with the UN Security Council on a planned meeting between Taliban representatives and the Pakistani prime minister, calling it a clear violation of Afghanistan's national sovereignty.

Last week week, Information Minister Fawad Chaudhry had confirmed that the next round of peace talks between the Taliban and the United States will be held in Pakistan as part of efforts to seek a political settlement of the 17-year Afghan war.

The statement on Sunday offered no other details.

He said the Taliban could not be blamed for the delay in the meeting because they were full prepared.

USA envoys say Pakistan has an important role to play in the Afghan peace effort.

Earlier, Taliban officials and US negotiators agreed on a draft peace pact on January 26 setting out the withdrawal of foreign troops from Afghanistan within 18 months, potentially ending the longest war the USA has ever been involved in. "Let us pray that this leads to peace and ends nearly three decades of suffering of the courageous Afghan people", Khan said.

Both the Taliban and the United States hailed progress after the end of the last round of negotiations in Qatar last month but Western diplomats familiar with discussions say that many tough hurdles lie ahead.

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