Khalilzad Hopes to Finalize Afghan Peace Deal in Doha

Afghan govt prepares for Taliban talks

The Afghan government has named a team for the purpose of negotiating directly with the Taliban. The Taliban has said they won’t talk until the deal on a US pullout is reached, but there are reasons to expect that might be sooner, rather than later.

US negotiator Zalmay Khalilzad is heading to Doha for the eight round of talks with the Taliban, and says he believes this could be the final one before a deal, and could conclude with agreement on the deal they’ve been working on.

The main aspects of the deal are setting a pullout date, and the Taliban pledging to keep ISIS and al-Qaeda forces out of Afghanistan. Beyond that, a ceasefire would be reached, and power-sharing talks with Afghanistan would be held.

It’s not clear how soon the US troops might be withdrawn from the country, but the Taliban seems to expect it to be pretty soon, while US officials say they intend it to be “conditional,” and are mum on how long it would take.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is news editor of Antiwar.com.