Washington DC [US], July 24 (ANI): The United States, the European Union, and NATO on Friday urged the Taliban to stop its military offensive in Afghanistan and engage in peace talks.
"We call on the Taliban to end their military offensive, and on both the Islamic Republic and the Taliban to engage meaningfully in the peace process," the joint communique, issued by the US, EU, France, Germany, Italy, Norway, the UK and NATO," the US-Europe Communique on Afghanistan and Peace Efforts said on Friday.
The Special Representatives and Special Envoys of the US, the EU, France, Germany, Italy, NATO, Norway, and the UK met in Rome on July 22 to discuss the situation in Afghanistan and the developments in peace negotiations after the fresh round of talks in Doha.
The joint communique reiterated that the Taliban and the Afghan government must deliver on their commitments to prevent the use of Afghan soil by terrorist groups from launching attacks against any other country. They also spoke against hosting members of these groups nor allowing them to recruit, train, fundraise or transit through Afghanistan.
"The people of Afghanistan have suffered for too long from conflict. We are deeply concerned about the high levels of violence, the Taliban's military offensive, and the number of reported serious human rights abuses and violations alleged in communities most affected by the ongoing armed conflict across the country," the statement read.
The communique also called on all parties to reduce violence and protect civilians, respecting their obligations under international humanitarian law. "We reiterate the urgency of reaching a ceasefire to ensure the success of negotiations, and we acknowledge the sacrifices of the Afghan security forces."
They also urged the Taliban to reduce violence, uphold their commitments to protect Afghanistan's infrastructure, protect civilians and cooperate on humanitarian assistance, particularly as the Afghan people suffer acutely from the effects of COVID-19 and drought, in addition to violence.
"We also call upon all parties to ensure the safety of foreign embassies and other diplomatic missions, multilateral agencies, media representatives, airports and non-governmental organizations and their Afghan and international staff. We particularly appreciate Turkey's readiness and commitment to assist with airport security as needed," the communique added. (ANI)