Gen. Scott Miller, commander of US and NATO forces in Afghanistan, speaking during a visit to the eastern province of Laghman, called the ongoing negotiations in Doha "very promising."
“Discussions in Doha are very promising and important for the Afghan people, we also know the Taliban violence has to go down,” said Miller in Zabul.
Miller, who traveled with acting Defense Minister Assadullah Khalid, said that he has grave concerns about civilian casualties.
“Personally I am a little concerned about the civilian casualties…the results of bombs that civilians keep striking, and we need to bring the violence down, that is the will of the people,” he said.
Meanwhile, acting Minister Khalid said: “We are hopeful about a ceasefire in the coming days,” said Khalid.
This comes as contact groups of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan and the Taliban continue their discussions about the procedural structure of the talks.
A member of the delegation of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan told TOLOnews on Thursday that there is a possibility that the two sides will finalize their discussions on the procedures by Saturday.
Naming the cause of the war in Afghanistan is said to be one of the key points of contention between the negotiating teams of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan and the Taliban in the negotiation process.
This is the sixth day that contact groups from the two sides are continuing their debates about starting the official talks.
Fighting continues despite the talks, and at least 32 security force members, including public uprising forces, were killed and 25 others were wounded in Taliban attacks in several parts of the country on Wednesday night, local officials said on Thursday.
In Kabul, Afghan forces during an operation in Surobi district in Kabul killed Ghairatullah, also known as Mullah Sangeen, the deputy commander of the Taliban's "Red Unit," the Kabul Police Headquarters said on Thursday.
Another Taliban fighter named Salahuddin Sadiq was also killed.
10 Taliban were wounded in the operation, said police.
According to Kabul police, Mullah Sangeen "plotted a series of deadly terror attacks in Kabul."
Peace talks between the Taliban and the delegation representing the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan began in Qatar on Saturday, September 12 with officials from many nations and international organizations attending or speaking virtually at the opening ceremony.