Kabul [Afghanistan], April 18 (ANI): Andreas von Brandt, the EU ambassador in Afghanistan, on Saturday urged the Taliban to take the upcoming UN-led conference on Afghanistan seriously and hoped that the Taliban will not miss this opportunity offered to them at the upcoming Istanbul conference.
"I still hope that the Taliban will not miss this opportunity offered to them in Istanbul. Never I would say in the last five years has Afghanistan been again high on the agenda as it has been in recent weeks," the envoy said at a gathering in Kabul, as quoted by TOLOnews.
The Turkey conference on Afghanistan is scheduled for April 24. This comes after vWashington announced its decision to withdraw US troops out of Afghanistan till September 11.
Taliban's spokesperson Mohammad Naeem Wardak said on Tuesday that the movement would refrain from taking part in any conference until foreign military presence in Afghanistan is ended.
"Until all foreign forces completely withdraw from our homeland, the Islamic Emirate will not participate in any conference that shall make decisions about Afghanistan," Wardak tweeted.
Secretary of State Antony J Blinken on Thursday met Afghanistan High Commission for National Reconciliation Chair Abdullah Abdullah and discussed the future of the US-Afghanistan partnership.
"Secretary of State Antony J Blinken met with Afghanistan High Commission for National Reconciliation Chair Abdullah Abdullah today in Kabul to discuss the future of the US-Afghanistan partnership, which builds on twenty years of shared investment," US State Department said in a statement.
Secretary Blinken and Dr Abdullah discussed the importance of continuing to work towards a negotiated political settlement and permanent and comprehensive ceasefire.
"Secretary Blinken reiterated the US commitment to the peace process and that we will use our full diplomatic, economic, and humanitarian toolkit to support the future the Afghan people want, including the gains made by Afghan women," he added. (ANI)