Senior Taliban negotiator visits Pakistan

KABUL (Pajhwok): A senior Afghan Taliban’s negotiator, Qari Din Mohammad, is expected in Pakistan amid reports initial talks between the rebels and the Kabul administration have begun in Qatar.
A member of the Taliban’s Doha office, Din Mohammad, who headed a delegation to China for talks, will hold talks with Pakistan officials on the Afghan peace process.
A Taliban official, who did not want to be identified, confirmed to a Pakistani newspaper “Express Tribune” the Mohammad’s Pakistan visit.
In November 2014, a Taliban delegation, headed by Din Mohammad, visited Chinese capital Beijing at invitation to discuss China’s possible role in the Afghan peace process.
Din Mohammad, who has been involved in talks with several countries including China, was scheduled to hold ‘follow-up discussions’ with Chinese officials, the Taliban official said. When approached, an official at the Chinese Embassy in Islamabad refused to comment.
Chinese Foreign Minister during a visit to Islamabad last week said his country was ready to facilitate talks between the Taliban and the Afghan government.
But a Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid denied any contacts with the US or the Afghan government in Qatar.
“There are no talks either with the US or the Kabul administration. However, we are in contact with countries, independent sides and organisations with whom we need to maintain relations,” he said on Saturday.
President Ashraf Ghani, meanwhile, continued consultations in Kabul to win backing for possible talks with the Taliban and said his government would not hold secret talks but would keep the Afghan people in the loop.
“Peace cannot be established in the dark and away from the people’s sight, but it needs a transparent process with involvement of the entire nation,” a presidential palace statement quoted Ghani as telling a series of separate meetings with representatives of political parties, tribal elders, prominent figures, and civil society activists.


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