Kabul offers Taliban power-sharing to end violence: source

Proposal allows Taliban to share power in return for a halt in violence in country, says the source


AFP August 12, 2021
PHOTO: Anadolu Agency/FILE

DOHA:

Afghan government negotiators in Qatar have offered the Taliban a power-sharing deal in return for an end to fighting in the country, a government negotiating source told AFP on Thursday.

"Yes, the government has submitted a proposal to Qatar as mediator. The proposal allows the Taliban to share power in return for a halt in violence in the country," the source said.

The development comes after the Taliban took the strategic Afghan city of Ghazni just 150 kilometres (95 miles) from Kabul, a senior lawmaker and the insurgents said earlier.

Read more: Taliban take Ghazni city on road to Afghan capital

The interior ministry confirmed the fall of the city, which lies along the major Kabul-Kandahar highway and serves as a gateway between the capital and militant strongholds in the south.

"The enemy took control," spokesman Mirwais Stanikzai said in a message to media, adding later the city's governor had been arrested by Afghan security forces.

Pro-Taliban Twitter feeds showed video of him being escorted out of Ghazni by Taliban fighters and sent on his way in a convoy, prompting speculation in the capital that the government was angered with how the provincial administration capitulated.

Also read: Taliban take over ‘ninth provincial capital’ within a week

As security forces retreated across the country, Kabul handed a proposal to Taliban negotiators in Qatar offering a power-sharing deal in return for an end to fighting, according to a member of the government's team in Doha who asked not to be named.

A second negotiator, Ghulam Farooq Majroh, said the Taliban had been given an offer about a "government of peace" without providing more specifics.

Authorities in Kabul have now effectively lost most of northern and western Afghanistan and are left holding a scattered archipelago of contested cities also dangerously at risk of falling to the Taliban.

 

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