The High Peace Council (HPC) on Friday said the date of Jeddah talks on the Afghan peace has not been specified but added that the Afghan government has “precondition” for sending its delegation to the meeting.
The date of the Jeddah talks will be specified by Saudi Arabia in collaboration with other participants of the meeting, said Ehsan Taheri the HPC spokesman.
Taheri said government will send its delegation to Jeddah talks if they are ensured that face-to-face talks will be held between the delegation and Taliban representatives.
In Abu Dhabi talks which were held between US and Taliban officials, the militant group refused to meet the Afghan government delegation who were in the UAE for holding proximity talks with the group.
The Afghan government last week said it will not send a delegation to Jeddah meeting if Taliban representatives refuse to meet their team.
“The issue of Jeddah is completely different. No doubt, Afghanistan should be involved in this meeting. It is not negotiation, but it is the issue of Afghanistan peace and it is about trust building and government’s precondition is that government should be strongly assured that the experience of Abu Dhabi will not be repeated,” Taheri said.
The Jeddah meeting was supposed to be held on January 04.
Commenting on reports about Jeddah meeting, Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid said in a message to TOLOnews that they do not have Jeddah meeting in their plan and that the reports released about the meeting were not real.
Political analysts said Taliban spokesman’s remarks on Jeddah meeting indicate that the efforts of US, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates for bringing the group to negotiations table have faced new hurdles.
“Taliban did not agree on a meeting in this date. It is possible that the meeting will be held, but still it is not specified where it will be held,” said Nazar Mohammad Mutmaen, a political affairs analyst.
Other political analyst, Ali Akbar Jamshidi, said the refusal of Taliban to attend the talks has resulted in a delay in the meeting.
“The Afghan government should ask its allies that when you negotiate with our armed oppositions in absence of government delegation, it is a kind of indifference towards the government,” Jamshidi said.
Taliban has repeatedly said through media that they will not hold talks with the Afghan government and that they will continue meeting US officials.
Despite all these, a senior advisor of President Ashraf Ghani said last week that 2019 is the year of peace in Afghanistan.