Talks between Afghan delegation, Taliban in Doha ‘cancelled’

The much-anticipated talks between Afghan politicians, civil society members and other representatives of Afghanistan’s society with the Taliban scheduled for April 20-21 were “canceled” due to a “disagreement” by Qatari government on the 250-member list proposed by the Afghan side, reported the TOLOnews.

The Presidential Palace said in a statement that the Doha meeting was “canceled” as the Qatar government did not accept the Afghan delegation’s list and instead suggested a new list “which was not acceptable to the Afghan government”.

“After completion of preparations of the delegation for going to (Qatar), Qatar government sent a new list which was not balanced in terms of involvement of the people of Afghanistan and in other words it was a disrespect to the national will of the Afghan people and this is not acceptable to the people of Afghanistan,” the statement said.

“A group of politicians at a meeting with President Ashraf Ghani agreed that the act by the Qatari government is not acceptable and they decided to ask the Qatari government to allow the attendance of the Afghan delegation selected by Afghanistan,” the statement said. “As far as the government of Qatar could not practice our legitimate suggestion, the Doha conference was canceled.”

Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid said leaders of the group were uncomfortable with the size of the Afghan delegation and its composition.

“Presence of some participants was completely against the list of what was agreed upon,” Mujahid said, adding that the delegation included Afghans working for the government.

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