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Taliban Holds Talk with the United States

A United States delegation held talks with senior Taliban representatives in Doha, Qatar to discuss wide-ranging issues including security, terrorism and human rights in the first official meeting since the chaotic American withdrawal from Afghanistan in August this year. The talks that happened over the weekend were the first time when the formal talks between the State Department and the Taliban happened since the US evacuated its diplomats and troops from Kabul. The talks also come a week later after UK diplomats met with the Taliban officials. 

State Department spokesman Ned Price after the meeting stated that the “candid and professional” discussions covered the need for safe passage of U.S. citizens, other foreign nationals and Afghan partners. The U.S. also called for “the meaningful participation of women and girls in all aspects of Afghan society.” He further added, “The two sides also discussed the United States’ provision of robust humanitarian assistance, directly to the Afghan people.” 

On the other hand, Afghanistan’s acting foreign minister Mullah Amir Khan Muttaqi has stated that the focus of the Afghan delegation was on humanitarian aid, as well the implementation of the agreement signed between the Taliban and Washington last year which paved the way for the final US withdrawal. 

As per reports, the Taliban has asked the state to lift the ban on the reserves of Afghanistan’s central bank and also the provision of covid-19 vaccines for the Afghan people. It is speculated that the meeting comes as a response to the growing security as well as economic downfall leading to the increasing rate of the humanitarian crisis in Afghanistan. Also, the meeting doesn’t come as a way to recognise the group but to continue talks on issues that are of national interest for the US and that the further involvement and course of action will depend on how the Taliban will conduct itself.