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Sources, Khalilzad’s Mission as US Peace Envoy Extended

Sources: Khalilzad’s Mission as US Peace Envoy Extended

KABUL – Joe Biden’s administration has extended Zalmay Khalilzad’s mission as the US Special Representative for Afghanistan Reconciliation for an unspecific period of time, US sources have disclosed.
US sources added that the Biden administration has started the assessment of the US-Taliban peace deal signed between the two sides in Doha on February 29, particularly, the (secret) annexes to the agreement.
The assessment will be wrapped up in three weeks’ time, the sources said.
“The process became lengthy due to the shortcomings that it has, also what has been carried out by Khalilzad towards the discussions and agreements–all were carried out in a unilateral manner,” said Mohammad Ismail, a former jihadi commander.
“We believe that the US’s policy has been very wrong, they provided consecutive concessions to the Taliban over the past several months to reach their targets, their objectives were personal,” said Bahadur Aminian, the Iran ambassador to Kabul.
The Afghan government has in the past reacted cautiously with the mission by Khalilzad.
Last month, Khalilzad during a trip to Kabul met various Afghan political leaders, but couldn’t meet Ghani.
“I think it would be better to let Khalilzad continue his mission and complete his work,” said Gulbuddin Hekmatyar, the leader of Hizb-e-Islami.
“The recognition that he has from the Afghan political parties–no politician has got that much recognition,” said political analyst Mirwais Ghiasi.
The Afghan peace negotiations that started on Sept. 12 last year have made progress in their procedural rules. They took a three-month break and resumed their talks on Jan. 6. However, the Afghan republic and the Taliban’s negotiators have not held any meetings over the last 13 days to discuss the agenda of the talks.
Experts said that the United States is expected to announce its stance on the Afghan peace process and the presence of NATO forces in Afghanistan at the ministerial meeting of the alliance next month.
(Sahar News)

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