A Taliban delegation has arrived in Qatar, paving the way for peace talks with the Afghan government.
“All members of our negotiating team have arrived in Doha. Negotiations will begin after some minor technical issues are resolved,” said Sohail Shaheen, a spokesman for the Taliban’s political office.
The inter-Afghan talks are part of a peace deal reached between the United States and the Taliban in Doha in February this year.
The United States has been pushing for talks between the Taliban and the Afghan government to decide the future of Afghanistan after the withdrawal of US troops.
US National Security Adviser Robert O’Brien also spoke by telephone with Afghan President Ashraf Ghani last week.
Washington is also pressuring Pakistan to bring the Taliban to the negotiating table.
A Taliban delegation recently visited Pakistan to discuss peace talks.
The Afghan government’s negotiating team is still in Kabul, but the logistics team arrived in Doha this week.
A spokesman for the Afghan government’s reconciliation council said his negotiating team was ready for talks.
“The release of the prisoners is complete and there is no reason to delay the talks now,” he tweeted on a social networking site.
However, he acknowledged that their numbers were not enough to defeat the Taliban. “We hope the Taliban will start talks soon,” he said.
It should be noted that according to the agreement between the Taliban and the United States, inter-Afghan talks were to begin in March.
However, talks have been delayed due to differences over prisoner exchanges and current tensions.