Taliban, Afghan Delegates Agree On Road Map To Peace -- But Texts Differ

The Taliban and a delegation representing Afghan society have  agreed at talks in Qatar upon a road map for a future political settlement  in what is seen as a major step toward ending Afghanistan's nearly 18-year  war. However, there are major discrepancies between different versions of the  resolution released in the Pashto, Dari, and English languages that  highlight where difficulties in the negotiations remain. The English version, released on July 9 by U.S. envoy Zalmay Khalilzad as  an "unofficial translation," declares that the Taliban and intra-Afghan  delegates had agreed to assure Afghan women their fundamental rights in  "political, social, economic, educational, [and] cultural affairs" in a  way that is "in accordance with the values of Islam." That is a key demand from Afghanistan's internationally backed government  in Kabul. The English translation also did not contain any reference to one of the  key issues for the Taliban -- their demand for the withdrawal of all  foreign military forces from Afghanistan.

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