Attend Istanbul summit, EU pleads with Taliban

Written by The Frontier Post

KABUL (Pajhwok): The European Union has called for the Taliban to take part in the UN-led Istanbul summit on Afghanistan, scheduled to be hosted by Turkey later this month.

EU Ambassador to Afghanistan Andreas von Brandt, speaking at an event here, asked the insurgent movement to seize the historic opportunity.

He believed the Taliban, if they were serious about winning the cooperation of the international community, should participate in the conference.

The Afghan peace process had gained enormous momentum, moving up the global agenda considerably over the last few weeks, the diplomat remarked.

Brandt remarked: “I still hope the Taliban will not miss this opportunity offered to them in Istanbul. I would say in the last five years Afghanistan has never been as high on the agenda as it has been in recent weeks.”

So far, the Taliban have not confirmed their participation in The Turkey talks on Afghanistan, slated to commence from April 24.

A few days back, the rebel outfit said it would not be part of any conference before the complete withdrawal of international forces from Afghanistan.

The EU ambassador, supporting the freedom of expression in Afghanistan, urged the warring sides to stop targeting journalists and media workers.

He said: “These targeted attacks have not only deprived the victims of their future but they can also amount to war crimes.”

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