Representatives of extended “Troika” US, Russia, China, and Pakistan met on Friday to discuss the Afghan peace process, intra-Afghan talks, and support the warring parties reach a political settlement, permanent and comprehensive ceasefire.
Qatar graciously hosted this meeting where representatives of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan and the Taliban were also present, the US Department of State said in a released statement.
Troika members reportedly supported a review of the “status of designations of Taliban individuals” and entities on the UN 1988 sanctions in the UNSC resolution 2513 (2020).
According to the statement, the Taliban’s sustained efforts to continue intra-Afghan talks and reduction in violence will positively affect the review process.
“We acknowledge the widespread and sincere demand of the Afghan people for a lasting and just peace and an end to the war”, the statement added, “We reiterate that there is no military solution in Afghanistan and a negotiated political settlement through an Afghan-led and Afghan-owned process is the only way forward for lasting peace and stability in Afghanistan”.
Noting the official announcement of US and NATO troops’ withdrawal from Afghanistan, the statement said, “We reiterate that the withdrawal of foreign troops should ensure a steady transition of the situation in Afghanistan. We stress that, during the withdrawal period, the peace process should not be disrupted, no fights or turbulence shall occur in Afghanistan, and the safety of international troops should be ensured,”.
The US Department of State also “expect the Taliban to fulfill its counterterrorism commitments, including preventing terrorist groups and individuals from using Afghan soil to threaten the security of any other country; not hosting these groups and preventing them from recruiting, training, and fundraising”.
“We expect the Afghan government to continue counterterrorism cooperation with the international community,” the statement read.
Extended Troika members also stressed that all warring parties should end the conflict, reduce violence, and called on the Taliban to not pursue the group’s Spring battles.
“We condemn in the strongest terms any attacks deliberately targeting civilians in Afghanistan and call on all parties to respect their obligations under international humanitarian law in all circumstances, including those related to protection of civilians”, the US department of state said in the statement.
The statement urged Afghanistan, Afghans, and the Taliban to ensure that terrorist groups never again use Afghan soil to threaten the security of any country.
“We reaffirm that any peace agreement must include protections for the rights of all Afghans, including women, men, children, victims of war, and minorities, and should respond to the strong desire of all Afghans for economic, social, and political development including the rule of law,” the statement added.