By: The Kabul Times
KABUL: US President Donald Trump has told reporters on Tuesday that there is a chance of making a deal with the Taliban.
“So, we are negotiating with the Taliban. We’ve been negotiating with them for a while. We will see what happens. It’s a chance of making a deal. It is a chance,” Trump said, as quoted by AP.
This follows a public announcement by US Defense Secretary Esper last week that an agreement for a seven-day reduction in violence was on the table at the US-Taliban talks, and also an AP report citing high-level officials saying that President Trump had “conditionally” approved a peace agreement being discussed in Doha, Qatar.
The expectation is that a signed peace deal between the US and the Taliban will lead to intra-Afghan talks.
The Afghan government has begun work on forming a peace-negotiating team with the Taliban, said Waheed Omar, director general of the president’s office of public and strategic affairs.
“The government will determine authorities of the negotiating team. The team will have about 15 members,” said Omar.
The peace-negotiating team will handle the technical aspects of the talks and the final decision will be taken in Kabul, said Omar, amid reports that the peace deal between the US and Taliban will be “finalized” next week.
“The Taliban are fighting with the Afghan govt. If they don’t agree to talk with the Afghan govt, there are no peace negotiations,” said Omar.
Meanwhile, a number of politicians have said that the Afghan government should make sure an inclusive peace-negotiating team is formed to avoid any possible obstacles in the process.