Pakistan presses Afghan Taliban to meet U.S. envoy in Islamabad

Pakistan presses Afghan Taliban to meet U.S. envoy in Islamabad

"The road to peace will require Taliban to sit with other Afghans, including the government", Khalilzad said.

Taliban representatives have long refused to hold direct talks with the Afghan government, which they say is an USA puppet.

The second round was supposed to take place in Jeddah but Taliban pulled out of the talks over disagreement on the inclusion of Afghan government in the peace process. "The Prime Minister will also hold talks on the issue of exporting Pakistani manpower to Qatar".

Foreign Office spokesman Dr Mohammad Faisal said he had no knowledge of the meeting between United States special representative Zalmay Khalilzad and Afghan Taliban representatives but the sources said Pakistan had conveyed to the Taliban leadership its desire to convene a meeting in Islamabad this week to push forward the peace agenda.

A subsequent meeting between the US Special Envoy and Taliban representatives in Qatar was also called off after Taliban demanded withdrawal of travel restrictions on their key leaders.

During the meeting today, the United States envoy discussed progress on Afghan peace process and reviewed developments after the Abu Dhabi rounds of talks, said the Foreign Office spokesman on Twitter.

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"If the Talibs want to talk, we can talk".

Khalilzad, who met Taliban representatives last month in Abu Dhabi, travelled to Afghanistan as well as China and India as part of the four-nation trip which ends January 21.

"Pakistan should first and foremost introspect its own role and responsibility in the precarious situation in Afghanistan; put an end to all kind of support to cross border terrorism from territories under Pakistan " s control, and join global efforts to bring inclusive peace to Afghanistan", Mr Kumar said.

The foreign secretary reiterated Pakistan's commitment to facilitate Afghan reconciliation process to realise the shared goal of peace and stability in the region.

She said it is noted that taking the Afghan peace process forward remains a shared responsibility.

Prime Minister Imran Khan assured President Ghani that Pakistan was making honest efforts for a negotiated settlement of the conflict in Afghanistan through an inclusive peace process as part of shared responsibility. Both leaders also agreed to remain engaged and create an environment for resolving all outstanding issues.

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