Taliban dismiss outcome of London talks on Afghan peace deal

Islamabad, Feb. 7 (ANI): The Afghan Taliban has dismissed the outcome of a conference in London between the leaders of Afghanistan, Pakistan and Britain which aimed to work towards a peace deal within six months.

Taliban spokesperson Zabihullah Mujahid said the conference and other "horse trading" were the real obstacles of effective and fruitful negotiations between the factual sides, reports The Express Tribune.

This is apparently a reference to the Taliban's repeated demand that any peace negotiations should be between itself and the US.

Mujahid added that Western forces facing military defeat use such conferences as propaganda to conceal the deadlock in the country and "show that some activity and progress is going on".

The Taliban in March 2012 suspended contacts with American representatives in Qatar over a potential prisoner exchange and opening a liaison office in the Gulf state.

The terror outfit has consistently refused to negotiate directly with the Western-backed Kabul government, against whom it has been waging an insurgency for 11 years.

US-led NATO combat forces are due to withdraw from Afghanistan next year, and efforts to negotiate peace have gained urgency as they seek to leave with some dignity.

Mujahid said that the views in the lengthy article posted on the Taliban's website would be followed soon by an official Taliban response to the conference. (ANI)


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