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Wednesday 22 August 2018

US and its Allies Welcome Ghani’s Conditional Ceasefire


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KABUL (Pajhwok Afghan News) — President Ashraf Ghani on Sunday announced a conditional three-month ceasefire with the Taliban starting on Monday, calling on Taliban leadership to welcome the wishes of Afghans for a long lasting and real peace. NATO, US, Pakistan and the UN have welcomes this announcement.

In a statement, the UN Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA), welcomed the announcement of the conditional ceasefire for the upcoming Eid and called on the Afghan government and the Taliban to seize this opportunity to put an end to violence. The statement added that the last truce between the two sides saved hundreds of lives and Afghans displayed their strong desire for peace.

Meanwhile, the U.S. Secretary of State welcomed the conditioned move by President Ghani and urged the Taliban insurgent group to participate. In a statement, Pompeo said: “This plan responds to the clear and continued call of the Afghan people for peace.” He added that the United States supports President Ghani’s offer for comprehensive negotiations on a mutually agreed agenda. Pompeo noted that Washington remains ready to “support, facilitate, and participate” in direct negotiations between the Afghan government and the Taliban. “There are no obstacles to talks. It is time for peace,” he said.

Pakistan also welcomed the decision for a conditional ceasefire. The Pakistan Foreign Office said in a statement it welcomed the Afghan government’s decision of a ceasefire during Eid-ul-Adha and hoped that it would create an environment which would help bringing peace and stability in Afghanistan.

NATO SG Jens Stoltenberg also welcomes president Ghani announcement of a second ceasefire with the Taliban. “I encourage the Taliban to demonstrate their concern for Afghans by respecting it”, he said

Afghanistan national security advisor Hanif Atmar on Wednesday called on Russia to exert pressure on the Taliban to arrive at the negotiating table. Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov has asserted that Russia is in contact with the Taliban to ensure the security of its citizens in Afghanistan and with the aim of encouraging the Taliban to enter into a peaceful dialogue with the government.

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