Taliban demands US release of remaining prisonerstext_fields
Kabul/Doha: Taliban has reiterated its demand for the release of the remaining prisoners currently lodged in Afghan jails, during a meeting with US Special Representative for Afghanistan Reconciliation Zalmay Khalilzad in Doha.
In a statement on Thursday, Taliban spokesman Mohammad Naeem said the two sides also discussed issues around the implementation of US-Taliban peace agreement in Wednesday's meeting, TOLO News reported.
The Afghan government has so far released 5,600 Taliban prisoners as part of the conditions that were laid out before the peace negotiations officially started on September 12.
But, an Afghan government spokesman said that the Taliban's demand for release of the remaining prisoners has no importance for the peace process.
"What the Taliban has said and shown in action have weakened the peace process," presidential spokesman Sediq Sediqqi said.
"The continuation of violence and expressing strange statements and even raising the issue of prisoners itself creates barriers for peace," he added.
The development comes as negotiators from the Afghan government and the Taliban are in Doha where they are trying to bridge gaps on some contested topics and procedural rules intended for the start of the direct talks.