11 October 2010

Open Discussions Between Afghanistan and Talban?

They may not be 'formal' but there have been discussions between the Taliban and Karzai's government for a while now.

Afghan President Hamid Karzai confirmed his government has been in informal talks with the Taliban on securing peace in war-weary Afghanistan "for quite some time" — the latest in a series of high-level acknowledgments of contacts with the insurgent group.

The comments came as Taliban fighters ambushed a military supply convoy in the east Monday and fought with Afghan forces in the south.

Unofficial discussions have been held with Taliban representatives over an extended period, Karzai told CNN's "Larry King Live" in an interview to be broadcast Monday.

"We have been talking to the Taliban as countryman to countryman," Karzai said. "Not as a regular official contact with the Taliban with a fixed address, but rather unofficial personal contacts have been going on for quite some time."

Afghan presidential spokesman Waheed Omar said it was not the first time Karzai had acknowledged talks, saying both the president and his office have repeatedly confirmed unofficial discussions.

"He has talked about it in the past as well. It's not hidden from anyone," Omar said. The president's office previously confirmed there were informal talks with different levels of Afghan Taliban over the past couple of years.

One wonders if the the ISI is going to get in a snit again and shut down the talks.

By: Brant

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