US Official: Taliban Should Say They Want Peace

Published January 22, 2012 2:09PM (EST)

KABUL, Afghanistan (AP) — A top American diplomat visiting Afghanistan says the United States wants the Taliban to issue statements disassociating themselves from international terrorism and saying they want to join a peace process to end the 10-year war.

Marc Grossman, the special U.S. envoy to Afghanistan and Pakistan, spoke to reporters Sunday in Kabul alongside Afghanistan's Deputy Foreign Minister Jawed Ludin.

Ludin says the Afghan government supports having a Taliban political office opened in Qatar and would back an American decision to transfer some Taliban detainees from the U.S. military prison in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, to Qatar.

Grossman stressed that only Afghans can decide their country's future, easing Afghan President Hamid Karzai's fears of being sidelined in the peace process.

By Salon Staff

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