Taliban deny peace talk report

Taliban deny peace talk report

LONDON/KABUL: The Afghan Taliban denied a report on Monday that some of their leading members were ready to negotiate a comprehensive peace deal involving a long-term US military presence in Afghanistan.

A report to be published by UK think tank, Royal United Services Institute, said some leading Taliban were determined to make a decisive break with al- Qaeda as part of a settlement and were open to negotiation about allowing education for girls and US bases in the country. The Taliban would be open to negotiating a ceasefire as part of a general settlement, the report said.

However, a spokesman for the group denied that any interviews had taken place. "The report is a lie and is baseless," Zabihullah Mujahid said.

RUSI said its report, entitled 'Taliban Perspectives on Reconciliation', was based on interviews with four unnamed Taliban figures — reportedly close to Taliban head Mullah Omar.

US hands Afghans Bagram control

KABUL: The US handed control of the controversial Bagram jail and its 3,000 suspected Taliban inmates to Afghan authorities on Monday. The acting Afghan Defence Minister Enayatullah Nazari attended the ceremony. In a move that has angered the Afghan government, the US plans to keep one block at the prison, where terrorists captured in future will be held before being handed over.

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