After months of anticipation, the Taliban and Afghanistan government decided on a start date for Intra-Afghan peace negotiations on Thursday, September 10. The Afghanistan peace talks are scheduled to begin on September 12 and the process is being considered a diplomatic breakthrough that could stabilise the war-torn country after nearly four decades of conflict. As per reports, the peace talks between the parties will take place in not in Afghanistan but in Qatar where the Taliban maintains a political office.
Following the announcement, US President Donald Trump announced that his Secretary of State Mike Pompeo would be travelling to Qatar to attend the peace talks which will be held in the capital city of Doha. Afghan President Ashraf Ghani's spokesperson Sediq Sediqqi also conveyed the leader's best wishes for the negotiating team.
Mike Pompeo, in a statement regarding the talks, stated that this was a historic opportunity to bring peace to Afghanistan and that the Afghan people have ‘carried the burden of war for too long’. These peace talks are a result of a deal signed between Washington and the Taliban back in February wherein the US agreed to move its troops out of Afghanistan while the Taliban and Afghanistan government would both release prisoners.
Despite negotiations being back on track, peace in Afghanistan is going to be a long drawn process as the two sides discuss the right of women and minorities. As per reports, the Taliban has stated that it will allow women to go to school, work and even participate in politics but they would not accept a female president or a female chief justice even though they are willing to allow female judges.
Afghan government's negotiating team will contain several female officials who will have to find a way to uphold the right and freedoms of women. There are no women on the Taliban negotiation team.
(Image/Input Credit AP)