Doha [Qatar], October 6 (ANI): Asserting that violence in Afghanistan is "too high" despite the ongoing Afghan peace talks, United States special envoy Zalmay Khalilzad on Tuesday said Washington is pressing for a significant reduction in violence that will lead to a permanent and comprehensive ceasefire.
Khalilzad along with Austin Scott Miller, general commander for the US and NATO troops in Afghanistan, met Afghan President Ashraf Ghani who is visiting Qatar.
During the meeting, Khalilzad told Ghani that Afghans should not let the opportunity for peace to "slip away" and called on all nations, especially the neighbours and other key players, to do the same.
In a series of tweets, Khalilzad said: "President @ashrafghani is in Doha at Qatar's invitation. General Miller and I had an opportunity to meet with him and discuss the latest on the #AfghanistanPeaceNegotiations. General Miller and I affirmed ongoing U.S. support to Afghanistan, our partnership, and a peace process meant to produce a political settlement and an end to decades of war."
"General Miller and I affirmed ongoing U.S. support to Afghanistan, our partnership, and a peace process meant to produce a political settlement and an end to decades of war. The United States supports an Afghan-led, Afghan-owned process and remains ready to assist. We call on all nations, especially the neighbors and other key players, to do the same," he tweeted further.
Ghani has arrived in Qatar for a bilateral meeting with leaders. Al Jazeera has reported that Ghani will not meet Taliban officials even as peace talks are underway in the country's capital Doha.
Negotiations between the Afghan government and Taliban terrorist group that started last month aim to have the warring sides agree to a reduction of violence and a possible new power-sharing agreement in Afghanistan.
Violence, however, has not abated even as Afghan negotiators have been engaged in direct talks for the first time.
"Violence is too high, and too many Afghans are dying. We are pressing for a significant reduction in violence that will lead to a permanent and comprehensive ceasefire. A significant reduction in violence will save lives; increase trust; broaden support for peace; and help the negotiating teams make progress at a faster pace. This is what the Afghan people want. And the United States stands with them," he tweeted further. (ANI)