Afghan lead­ers, Tal­iban at­tend peace talks in Moscow

The Hitavada - - 2ND FRONT -

RUS­SIA on Fri­day said no one should play “geopo­lit­i­cal games” in Afghanistan as Moscow hosted a ma­jor con­fer­ence to cre­ate “favourable con­di­tions” for the start of di­rect peace talks with the Tal­iban whose rep­re­sen­ta­tives were present at the meet­ing which was at­tended by In­dia for the first time.

Open­ing the sec­ond Moscow meet­ing on Afghanistan, For­eign Min­is­ter Sergey Lavrov said Rus­sia and the coun­tries of the re­gion will con­tinue to do ev­ery­thing pos­si­ble to launch di­a­logue be­tween Afghanistan’s Govt and the Tal­iban, which is banned in Rus­sia. “We are de­ter­mined to make ev­ery pos­si­ble ef­fort to fa­cil­i­tate the open­ing of a new page in the his­tory of Afghanistan,” was quoted as say­ing by the Staterun Tass news agency.

Ad­dress­ing the gath­er­ing, Lavrov said the con­fer­ence was “aimed at build­ing an in­clu­sive in­tra-Afghan di­a­logue in or­der to ad­vance the na­tional rec­on­cil­i­a­tion process.” The US Em­bassy in Moscow has sent a diplo­mat

to ob­serve Fri­day’s dis­cus­sions at the meet­ing which is be­ing at­tended by rep­re­sen­ta­tives from Afghanistan, In­dia, Iran, China, Pak­istan and some other coun­tries. In­dia’s for­mer en­voy to Afghanistan Amar Sinha and for­mer In­dian High Com­mis­sioner to Pak­istan TCA Ragha­van are

rep­re­sent­ing New Delhi at the Moscow meet­ing at a “nonof­fi­cial level”.

In­dia’s con­sis­tent pol­icy has been that the peace talks should be Afghan-led, Afghan-owned, and Afghan-con­trolled and with par­tic­i­pa­tion of the Gov­ern­ment of Afghanistan.

(AP/PTI)

Rus­sian For­eign Min­is­ter Sergey Lavrov, (C), poses for a photo with the par­tic­i­pants of the con­fer­ence on Afghanistan bring­ing to­gether rep­re­sen­ta­tives of the Afghan au­thor­i­ties and the Tal­iban in Moscow, on Fri­day. The con­fer­ence marks Moscow’s at­tempt to get the Afghan au­thor­i­ties and the Tal­iban to­gether at a ta­ble. The US Em­bassy in Moscow has sent a diplo­mat to ob­serve the dis­cus­sions.

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