Taliban rejects calls for Ramadan truce in Afghanistan

Taliban rejects calls for Ramadan truce in Afghanistan
# 03 May 2019 20:43 (UTC +04:00)

The Taliban in Afghanistan has rejected calls for a Ramadan ceasefire and attacked the traditional council, or loya jirga, which made the proposal, ONA reports citing BBC.

The grand assembly is meeting in Kabul this week to discuss peace and called for an immediate ceasefire between the government and militants.

President Ashraf Ghani agreed to a truce provided it was not "one-sided".

But the Taliban rejected the call and accused members of being government allies.

In 2018 the Taliban agreed a three-day ceasefire coinciding with Eid at the end of the holy month of Ramadan - their first since the 2001 US-led invasion.

Speaking at the meeting of the loya jirga - a grand tribal council attended by 3,200 religious leaders, politicians and representatives from across the country - Mr Ghani said: "Let us prove that only Western countries cannot solve this conflict. There is also human civilisation here."

As a goodwill gesture, the president agreed to release 175 Taliban prisoners in response to demands made by the loya jirga.

The militants have been negotiating directly with a US envoy in Qatar since October, as Washington seeks to wind up the longest war in its history, which began in 2001 after the 9/11 attacks.