Soon they’ll be allies. Obama says the Taliban must reject al Qaeda as Obama gives money and weapons to al Qaeda in Syria. via U.S., Taliban to start peace talks in Qatar within days – ContraCostaTimes.com.
KABUL, Afghanistan — In a major breakthrough, the Taliban and the U.S. announced Tuesday that they will hold talks on finding a political solution to ending nearly 12 years of war in Afghanistan as the Islamic militant movement opened an office in Qatar.
President Barack Obama said the opening of the Taliban political office in Doha is an important first step toward reconciliation between the Taliban and Afghanistan’s government. But he says the process won’t be quick or easy and predicts there will be bumps along the way.
Obama says the Taliban still must denounce al-Qaida. He’s praising Afghan President Hamid Karzai for taking a courageous step by sending representatives to Qatar to discuss peace with the Taliban.
Obama spoke after meeting with French President Francois Hollande at the G-8 summit in Northern Ireland.
The decision to meet with the Taliban was a reversal of months of failed efforts to start peace talks while Taliban militants intensified a campaign targeting urban centers and government installations.
In Doha, Taliban spokesman Mohammad Naim said the group opposes the use of Afghan soil to threaten other countries and supports the negotiating process, two key demands of both the U.S. and Afghan governments before talks could begin. He made the statement shortly after the deputy foreign minister of Qatar said the Emir of the gulf state had given the go ahead for the office to open.
Naim said the Taliban are willing to use all legal means to end what they called the occupation of Afghanistan.
He thanked the leader of Qatar, Sheik Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani for allowing them to open the office.
The Obama administration officials say the U.S. and Taliban representatives will hold bilateral meetings, and Karzai’s High Peace Council is expected to follow up with its own talks a few days later.
The administration officials acknowledged the process will be “complex, long and messy” because of the ongoing level of distrust between the parties.
PS: By negotiate Obama means give millions of US taxpayer dollars to the Taliban and get nothing in return.
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