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Cairo Date: 9/18/2013
Kabul Time: 6:31 AM Cairo Time: 4:01 AM
Peace Envoys From Taliban at Loose Ends in Qatar NYT NYT

DOHA, Qatar When a handful of Taliban emissaries flew into Qatar on an American plane in 2010,
the Obama administration hoped they would help negotiate a peace deal that could stabilize Afghanistan
and allow the United States a graceful exit.
Three years after that secret arrival, the Taliban officials remain idle and their political office here
remains unused.
They are just living here enjoying the air-conditioning, driving luxury cars, eating and making babies,
one Afghan diplomat in Qatar said. Its all they can do; they have no work to do.
They are unlikely to see a negotiating table anytime soon either, with the new fighting season in
Afghanistan off to a particularly violent start and with the latest push to restart talks all but abandoned.
Once again, the Talibans attention is on the battlefield, and on what may be gained or lost there as the
American military begins its withdrawal from the war.
The Taliban presence here eight or more relatively high-ranking officials with their families, Afghan
officials say is occasionally reconfirmed in a sighting on the streets or, in the case of the Afghan
diplomat, when the Taliban men come to the sleepy Afghan Embassy here to register the birth of another
Early insurgent negotiations with American officials had a faltering start, initially over a proposed
prisoner exchange, in which five Taliban figures being held at Guantánamo Bay, Cuba, would be
released in exchange for the freedom of the lone American soldier being held prisoner by the Taliban,
Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl. But American officials say that their talks have ended and that there have been no
further discussions with the Taliban since early 2012.
Recently, Western diplomats in Kabul, Afghanistans capital, expressed hope that the discussions might
resume amid intense diplomatic activity by many countries to push peace talks, this time led by
Afghanistan. That hope now appears to have fizzled once again, and diplomats expectations of some
movement by the end of March from the Taliban side have come to naught. President Hamid Karzai met
here with the Qatari emir, Sheik Hamad bin Khalifa al-Thani, on March 31 in what Afghan officials
billed as discussions about opening the office, but no developments were announced after the meeting.
There is a limit to how long we can wait, said another Western diplomat familiar with the peace
efforts. If at some point they dont issue statements, its not open-ended. There are ways we can
pressure the Taliban in Qatar.
kabul Afghanistan
kabul Afghanistan
Mr FAZLURRAHMAN FAZIL Ambassador of The Islamic Republic of Afghanistan in Cairo
Mr FAZLURRAHMAN FAZIL Ambassador of The Islamic Republic of Afghanistan in Cairo
Mr FAZLURRAHMAN FAZIL Ambassador of The Islamic Republic of Afghanistan in Cairo