Taliban say Oslo talks will ‘transform atmosphere of war’
AFGHANISTAN: The Taliban’s first official talks with the West on European soil since seizing power in Afghanistan will help to “transform the atmosphere of war” after a two-decade insurgency against NATO forces, the group’s top spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid said.
No country has yet recognised the Taliban’s Government ― notorious for human rights abuses during a first stint in power between 1996 and 2001 when they were ousted by a US-led invasion.
“The Islamic Emirate has taken steps for meeting the demands of the Western world and we hope to strengthen our relations through diplomacy with all the countries, including European countries and the West in general,” Mujahid said.
The Taliban want to “transform the atmosphere of war… into a peaceful situation.”
Talks between the Taliban and Western officials will open in Oslo on human rights and humanitarian aid as a poverty crisis deepens.
The humanitarian situation in Afghanistan has deteriorated drastically since the Taliban’s takeover. International aid came to a sudden halt and the United States has frozen US$9.5 billion (RM40 billion) in Afghan central bank assets held overseas.
Hunger now threatens 23 million Afghans, or 55 per cent of the population, according to the United Nations, which says it needs US$5 billion from donor countries this year to address the humanitarian crisis in the country.
– THE MALAY MAIL