NATO urges Taliban to join peace talks in Afghanistan

BRUSSELS , NATO foreign ministers Wednesday welcomed the Afghan government’s unprecedented offer of unconditional peace talks with the Taliban and expressed their support to end the conflict in Afghanistan .

“The Taliban must join their fellow Afghans, including the Government of Afghanistan, at the negotiating table, and play a meaningful role in an Afghan-owned and Afghan-led political process,” they said in a statement following a meeting of the NATO’s Resolute Support Mission in Afghanistan in which Afghan foreign minister Salahuddin Rabbani participated.

“We remind the Taliban that they will never achieve their ambitions through fighting and emphasize that there is no military solution to the conflict,” stressed the statement.

Meanwhile, NATO Foreign Ministers today concluded two days of meetings in Brussels focused on relations with Russia , the Western Balkans, Afghanistan, and the Alliance’s new training mission in Iraq.

At the conclusion of the meeting, Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg told a press conference that Foreign Ministers will next meet in Washington in April 2019, marking 70 years since the Alliance’s founding. He added that NATO leaders will also meet later next year On Tuesday, ministers met to address NATO’s response to challenges from the Middle East and North Africa.

They welcomed that NATO’s new training mission in Iraq has now begun work. The mission will help local forces stabilize the country, and tackle terrorism at its root.

“Last night, we addressed our response to challenges coming from the broader Middle East and North Africa. Including NATO’s new training mission in Iraq. This will help Iraq tackle terrorism at its root. And make another important contribution to the fight against international terrorism,” said Stoltenberg.

Source: Kuwait News Agency