US Special Envoy to Afghanistan Zalmay Khalilzad traveled to Qatar on Sunday for new peace talks with the Taliban. That made the United States Department of State announced on Monday. On behalf of the United States, he must convince the terrorist movement to stop the military offensive in Afghanistan. As the final withdrawal of the remaining US military personnel from the country on August 31 nears, the Taliban is gaining ground in Afghanistan.
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Earlier talks to reach a political settlement with the Taliban came to nothing in the past year. The US State Department’s statement said the Taliban’s increasing military violence, resulting in civilian casualties, is “a major concern.” During the new three-day talks, representatives of countries and multilateral organizations will speak with the Taliban. They will push for a reduction in violence and a ceasefire. They also want the Taliban to pledge not to recognize a government that has come to power by force, the statement said.
In recent days, the Taliban conquered several provincial capitals. On Monday, military forces claimed to have captured the town of Aybak, located in northern Samangan province. Residents in the capital Kabul are very concerned. It is feared that the city will fall into the hands of the Taliban. Every day, several thousand people report to passport counters in the hope of fleeing in time, while reports of public executions, torture and forced marriages come in from cities captured by the Taliban.