Discussions on long-anticipated Doha talks’ agenda kick off

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KABUL: Joint working committees of the republican and the Taliban negotiating teams held their first meeting on Saturday in Doha, conferring on establishing an agenda for the talks.


The meeting comes following the finalization of contentious procedural rules for the negotiations last week.


The Afghan and the Taliban negotiators confirmed the meeting discussed issues related to the agenda, promising such gathering will continue to happen as another one is scheduled for Sunday (today) too.


Taliban Political Office Spokesman Naeem Wardak wrote on his Twitter handle, “In general, the issues related to the agenda and its formation were discussed in the meeting.”


“Negotiation teams agreed that such meetings would be taking place,” Naeem added.


Meanwhile, US Special Envoy for Afghanistan Zalmay Khalilzad tweeted, “having completed the rules and procedures, the Islamic Republic and Taliban teams are now in the next phase of negotiations, having started with their first meeting on the agenda in Doha.


The progress comes after an agreement on procedural rules between Doha’s negotiating sides was achieved and extensively welcomed by the international community, including NATO, UN, EU, and Qatar.