No US-Taliban meetings planned in Doha: White House

AFP , Thursday 19 Feb 2015

The White House said Thursday there are currently no meetings planned in Qatar between US and Taliban officials to discuss possible peace talks on Afghanistan, as Taliban sources had indicated.

"The United States currently has no meetings with the Taliban scheduled in Doha," National Security Council spokeswoman Bernadette Meehan said.

"We remain supportive of an Afghan-led reconciliation process whereby the Taliban and the Afghans engage in talks toward a settlement to resolve the conflict in Afghanistan."

Meanwhile, Taliban central spokesman said Thursday that there were no plans for negotiations with the US in Qatar, contradicting earlier claims by militant leaders that peace talks would resume within weeks.

"We do not have any plans for negotiations with anyone in Qatar. Regarding the negotiations, there are no new changes in the policy of Islamic Emirates of Afghanistan," Zabihullah Mujahid said in a statement.

Taliban sources earlier told AFP five former members of the supreme council of the Afghan Taliban would meet soon with US officials in Qatar, where the group briefly opened an office in June 2013.

The sources gave conflicting accounts of when the meetings might begin, with one suggesting as early as Thursday and another saying it would more likely be in the coming week.

*This story was edited by Ahram Online.

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