The US peace envoy Zalmay Khalilzad met with negotiation teams from the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan and the Taliban on Sunday to end the deadlock of Afghanistan’s negotiations, sources said on Monday.
TOLOnews reporter Karim Amini also said: “Today there may not be a meeting between the two teams, but there is optimism that meetings will resume in coming days.”
The peace negotiations between negotiating teams from the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan and the Taliban started on September 12; however, so far, direct talks have not started because of disagreements on procedural rules for the negotiations.
Two weeks ago Khalilzad landed in Doha, causing speculation that his mission was to mediate between the two sides. But Khalilzad himself said that he traveled to Doha for the purpose of implementing the US-Taliban peace agreement and to assist in attempts to reduce violence.
Although the Afghan government has refused to accept the US-Taliban deal as the foundation of the talks, Khalilzad believes that US-Taliban deal does in fact provide a valid basis.
Intra-Afghan talks in brief:
The opening ceremony for the negotiations was held on September 12, but the two sides of the talks have not yet started their direct negotiations. However, they have held seven meetings between their contact groups to discuss procedural rules for the talks.
The two sides have yet to agree on two matters: the religious basis for the talks and the relevance of the US-Taliban deal with the negotiations.
The Taliban demand recognition of the US-Taliban agreement as the 'mother deal' underlying the Afghan peace negotiations, and Hanafi Figh as the sole religious legal guidelines for the talks.
Reports say that the republic's team has suggested alternatives to the Taliban’s demands.
Return of Islamic emirate?
Abdullah Abdullah, chairman of the High Council for National Reconciliation, on Saturday in an interview with India's ANI said that in the peace process with the Taliban, it is not a question of the return of the old Islamic emirate, but what the new role of the Taliban should be.
"We are not talking about the Islamic emirate that the Taliban had in the old days. We are talking about a situation where Taliban have a role to play together with the rest of the people of Afghanistan, or the people of Afghanistan together with the Taliban. While, having lots of differences of views, points of views, at the same time accepting one another and accepting that basic fact that there is no solution through war," said Abdullah in the interview.