Afghan President Ashraf Ghani said on Friday that the Taliban peace process will only proceed once the “fate” of all members of the security forces caught by insurgents is clear.
“The reason that the Taliban prisoners’ release process is not proceeding is because we want the fate of all members of the security forces who are prisoners to be clear,” said the president, as reported by the chain from Afghan TV Tolo TV.
The release of prisoners is a requirement imposed by the Taliban in accordance with the historic peace agreement that they signed with the United States government on February 29. The agreement provides for the release of 5,000 insurgents and 1,000 members of the Afghan armed forces before direct contacts with Kabul begin.
To date, almost 4,200 Taliban and 850 members of the security forces have been released. “The peace process will not continue until our heroes’ fate has been resolved,” said Ghani.
Despite the signing of the Doha peace agreement, the Taliban continued to attack Afghan government forces and refused to accept a ceasefire before they sat down to speak. This has prompted Kabul to step up its activities against the group.