Clueless doesn’t even begin to describe these people.
KABUL, Afghanistan (AP) — The Taliban must renounce ties to terrorists and endorse peace efforts as a condition for opening a political office in the Gulf state of Qatar, a senior U.S. diplomat said Sunday.
Marc Grossman, the special U.S. envoy to Afghanistan and Pakistan, called for quick work in setting up the office in Qatar, seen as a step to negotiating an end to the decade-long war in Afghanistan between the Taliban and the Western-backed government.
The issue underscores the complexity of efforts to wind down the war ahead of the November Presidential election. Publicly, the Taliban have expressed no interest in reconciliation.
Grossman said Qatar and Afghanistan need to be in direct contact about the office, but “for an office to open, we also need to have a clear statement by the Afghan Taliban against international terrorism and in support of a peace process to end the armed conflict in Afghanistan.”
Last year Washington opened secret negotiations with the Taliban exploring their willingness to enter into peace talks ahead of the presidential election.
U.S. conversations with Taliban representatives have focused on establishing the Taliban office in Qatar and prisoner exchanges. The Taliban are seeking the release of five prisoners from the U.S. military prison in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, including Khairullah Khairkhwa, the former governor of Herat province, and Mullah Mohammed Fasl, a top Taliban commander.