What An 'Afghan-Led, Afghan-Owned' Peace Process Might Look Like

After six days of talks in Qatar with Taliban representatives, the U.S. special envoy on Afghanistan, Zalmay Khalilzad, announced on January 28 that an agreement had been reached on a "framework" peace process to end the 17-year Afghan war.Khalilzad said the agreement calls for the Taliban to prevent international terrorist groups from basing themselves in Afghanistan and for the United States to withdraw its forces from the country. Despite agreeing to a "framework" for future peace talks, the Taliban has yet to make concessions on two key U.S. demands -- implementing a cease-fire and agreeing to negotiate directly with Afghan government representatives as part of an Afghan-led, intra-Afghan peace process. Can these key issues be resolved?The Taliban appears now to be considering whether it is prepared to make such concessions. A major unanswered question is how to structure an intra-Afghan dialogue. It's also unclear what the Taliban will accept on timing and sequencing. in this round of negotiations.

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