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Russia, Taliban hold talks in Moscow

Russia's Special Representative for Afghanistan Zamir Kabulov [DFID/Flickr]
Russia's Special Representative for Afghanistan Zamir Kabulov [DFID/Flickr]

Russia's special envoy for Afghanistan held talks with the leaders of the Afghan Taliban in Moscow on Friday, Anadolu reports.

The Taliban delegation arrived in the Russian capital days after the US abruptly scrapped the peace negotiations with the group.

US President Donald Trump had said that peace talks with the Taliban are "dead" after cancelling a planned meeting with the Taliban outside of the nation's capital, in retaliation for recent attack in Kabul, which killed a dozen people, including a US service member.

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"The delegation is in Moscow. We have already met with Russian Presidential Envoy for Afghanistan Zamir Kabulov to discuss the recent events regarding the Afghan peace process," Taliban spokesman Mohammad Suhail Shaheen told reporters.

Russia, however, hoped that peace talks between the US and the Taliban are "suspended", and not "dead", since Moscow considers the US-Taliban deal as an "important step" that would pave the way to the national reconciliation and further comprehensive settlement of the Afghan crisis.

The raging Afghan conflict is in its 18th year, with thousands of lives lost and millions forced to flee their homes. The UN repeatedly calls for urgent need to seize opportunities for peace in the region.

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