September 29, 2020

Zalmay Khalilzad’s Visit To Islamabad Rekindles Hope for Fresh Us-Taliban Negotiation

The latest rounds of US-Taliban peace talks came to a disappointing end when US President Donald Trump called off the negotiations immediately after a suicide attack in Afghanistan, which killed two US soldiers. The talks were considered one of the most successful ones until the very end. The US President had even invited the Taliban delegation to Camp David for an official signing of a peace treaty event.

Nevertheless, the US Special Envoy on Afghanistan and the head of the US negotiating team, Zalmay khalilzad visited Pakistan’s capital and analysts say that this is a positive sign from the US, signaling that they want to restart the peace negotiations. However, experts also say that both sides would not trust each other to that extent this time. Due to the unexpected cancellation of talks by the US President, the Taliban might not trust the US peace negotiators’ promises anymore because they might have developed a perspective that the real power lies with the US president, who can call off negotiations almost at will. Experts also say that the US envoy won’t trust the Taliban’s delegation anymore as they might have developed a perspective that the Taliban’s negotiators do not have control over the Taliban commanders on ground.

Analysts say that there is little chance that any side would restart the dialogue process this time, as both sides blame each other for the derailment of the previous rounds of negotiations. However, the upcoming presidential elections in the US might compel Donald Trump to restart negotiations, as he wants the withdrawal and the peace treaty to give him a boost in the elections campaign.

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