The US peace envoy, Zalmay Khalilzad, referring to a meeting with Gen. Mark A. Milley, the chairman of the US Joint Chiefs of Staff, said that a political settlement in Afghanistan will help reduce the burden of war and protect the gains made in Afghanistan.
Khalilzad, who previously engaged in nine rounds of talks with the Taliban, also said that a political settlement in Afghanistan will help protect the United States from terrorism.
On his Twitter account, Khalilzad wrote about General Milley and their shared understanding: “He knows Afghanistan well. We agreed that a political settlement that safeguards the homeland from terrorist threats, allows us to reduce the burden of war, and protects two decades of progress in Afghanistan is in our national interest.”
Mutasim Agha Jan, a minister of finance during the Taliban regime, suggested that in order to bring the stalled peace process back on track, both the Afghan government and the Taliban should be open: “No side involved in the peace process should bring preconditions.”
Sediq Sediqqi, the presidential spokesman, affirmed the Afghan government’s commitment to negotiating a ceasefire, ending the war, and “restoring a dignified and sustainable peace in Afghanistan.”
Mawlavi Qalamuddin, a former Taliban member, acknowledged difficulties. The first was expectations: “Many suggest that the negotiations should be resumed from the point where they were stopped, and not from the beginning.” And, he added, “there is no consensus between us as we still await the result of the election.”
A number of lawmakers in Afghanistan’s parliament have expressed hope that the talks will resume soon:
“There is a need for an inclusive peace delegation,” said MP Azim Kibrzani.
“We hope that this process is resumed so that we can have dignified peace in the country,” said MP Sayed Hassan Paktiawal.
The US and the Taliban will resume their negotiations once the result of the Afghan presidential election has been announced, sources say.