Uzbekistan contacts Taliban to initiate Afghanistan-Taliban Negotiations

In an interesting turn around of events in the Afghanistan-Taliban war, Uzbekistan has contacted Taliban and has urged it to enter into negotiations with Afghanistan. The foreign ministry of Uzbekistan stated that it had made constructive negotiations with Taliban in order to contemplate the common grounds for the stakeholders of the Afghanistan Conference held in March in Tashkent. Uzbekistan backed the willingness of the Afghanistan government to enter into negotiations with Taliban in order to find a political solution to the Afghanistan-Taliban war. 

The foreign ministry of Uzbekistan further stated that in the previously held talks between Uzbekistan and Taliban, provisions of long-term peace and stability in Afghanistan were discussed. Other issues which were tabled included a roadmap for the economic development of Afghanistan and mutual cooperation. In order to create a favourable atmosphere for negotiations, the President of Afghanistan, Ashraf Ghani proposed an extension of the Ramadan ceasefire with Taliban by a year. But the question is, is Taliban willing to negotiate or will it continue to keep the Afghanistan-Taliban war alive?

The declaration drafted at the end of the Afghanistan Conference held in March was adopted by Uzbekistan, Afghanistan, India, China, Russia, Iran, Germany, France, UAE, The United States, European Union and others.

The willingness to negotiate hints at the realisation of the fact that the 17 years long Afghanistan-Taliban war can only be solved by a political solution and not a military solution. The Afghan war has wrecked Afghanistan since 17 long years has stalled development and social welfare. Afghanistan is keen to enter into negotiations with the Afgan Taliban and Uzbekistan seems to be playing a mediator’s role to stage these negotiations. But the story remains incomplete unless Taliban agrees to negotiate. While the Afghanistan government is ready to extend the ceasefire, Taliban has already put an end to the truce starting Monday.

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