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Afghan, Taliban To Hold Talks In Pakistan

Michael Koch Germany Special Representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan, Hekmat Khalil Karzai (C) Deputy Afghan Foreign minister in Political Affairs and Daniel F. Feldman U.S. Special Representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan.

The Afghan government has sent a delegation to Pakistan in the latest bid to start peace talks with the Taliban.

Afghan officials told RFE/RL’s Radio Mashaal on July 7 that Deputy Foreign Minister Hekmat Khalil Karzai and Taliban representative Mullah Jalil are in Islamabad to discuss peace and reconciliation in Afghanistan.

The meeting could be a step toward starting a formal peace process with the insurgent group that was ousted from power by a U.S.-led invasion in 2001.

The talks come as Taliban's annual offensive is in full swing, with gunmen storming a building and a suicide car bomber targeting a convoy of NATO forces in Kabul on July 7.

In recent months, there have been several informal meetings between Afghan officials and the Taliban at venues outside Afghanistan, but little concrete progress appears to have been made.

With reporting by Reuters and AFP