Taliban and Afghan government peace talks begin Saturday

Peace negotiations between the Islamic Taliban movement and the Afghan Government will take place in Qatar this weekend. The peace talks should put an end to almost twenty years of war in Afghanistan.

The Afghan Government is sending a team of negotiators today to the Qatari capital Doha, where negotiations will start tomorrow. Yesterday, six Taliban members detained for attacks on Afghan troops flew to Qatar. Their release was a desire of the Taliban, but some Western countries, including France and Australia, had objected. Among the victims of the attacks were French and Australians.

The peace negotiations are the result of an agreement reached in February between the United States and the Taliban. In exchange for the withdrawal of US troops and the release of Taliban prisoners, the US demanded that the Taliban take part in peace negotiations.

American Secretary of State Mike Pompeo will open the negotiations on Saturday. He calls the peace talks ‘an historic moment’ and an opportunity for Afghanistan to put an end to decades of war and bloodshed.