Civilian casualties fell as a result of shelling the Afghan capital, Kabul, and Afghan President Muhammad Ashraf Ghani confirmed that his country had not yet reaped the fruits of peace despite the sacrifices, while peace talks resumed in Qatar today in the presence of US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo.
Al-Jazeera correspondent quoted a spokesman for the Afghan Interior Ministry, as saying that “RPGs” landed near schools and hospitals in the center of Kabul.
The Afghan Ministry of Interior stated that two people were killed and at least 10 wounded, as a result of the launch of 14 shells, which caused a series of explosions, without any party claiming responsibility yet.
Sirens were heard in embassies and company headquarters in and around the Green Zone, which is a large, heavily fortified neighborhood that houses the headquarters of dozens of international companies and their workers.
During a remote meeting organized by members of the Security Council and other countries regarding peace in Afghanistan, President Ashraf Ghani said, “We have made sacrifices again and again. There is not a single home that did not feel the pain of loss, yet our peace negotiation delegation remained consistent in its positions, just as it was committed to negotiations. Which is taking place in Doha, where the Taliban insisted to start discussing the issue of pluralism. “
He added that his country had paid a heavy price for the sake of peace, but that has not helped it so far, stressing his country’s need for confidence and knowing what will happen by its partners and allies.
For his part, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs of Qatar Sheikh Muhammad bin Abdul Rahman Al Thani said that his country’s position is firm in standing by Afghanistan to restore peace and stability in it.
However, he stressed that the aspirations of the Afghan people to reach a desirable comprehensive political settlement will not be achieved without respect for the rights and effective participation of all components of the Afghan people.
And the US State Department said – late Friday – that Pompeo would hold separate meetings in Doha today with negotiators from the Taliban and the Afghan government.
On Tuesday, the US Department of Defense announced the withdrawal of about two thousand additional American soldiers from Afghanistan by January 15, that is, 5 days before the inauguration of President-elect Joe Biden, and thus the number of American forces in this country will be 2500.
While the Afghan government places its hopes on Biden, the Taliban are betting on implementing the promise of outgoing President Donald Trump to withdraw, and the movement called upon Biden, after his victory in the elections, to abide by the Doha Agreement signed in February between Washington and the movement, which provided for the withdrawal of US forces by May. May 2021, in exchange for a Taliban pledge not to attack the Americans.