Afghan official calls on Taliban to launch one-month ceasefire

The Taliban should call a one-month ceasefire to prove they still control their forces, Afghanistan's national security advisor said on Tuesday.

"If the Taliban really want peace, they should prove how much control they have over their commanders and how much they really obey their commands," Hamdullah Mohib of Afghanistan said at a press conference in Kabul, capital of Afghanistan.

"Our suggestion is for a one-month ceasefire, followed by negotiations," he added.

Mohib, Afghanistan's former ambassador to the U.S., said any future negotiations should include his government, as well as Pakistan, which has long been accused of backing the Taliban.

"Pakistan should provide a guarantee that they will not support the Taliban or other groups like them and not give them safe havens," he said.

Zalmay Khalilzad, the U.S. special envoy leading talks for Washington, has since spoken informally with Taliban officials in Pakistan, raising the possibility Washington seeks to resume dialogue. 

Khalilzad was in Kabul on Sunday and visited Islamabad again Monday, though it was unclear if he spoke to Taliban officials on that visit.

(Cover: Afghan security forces investigate the site where a Taliban car bomb detonated near an intelligence services building in Qalat in Zabul province, September 19, 2019. /VCG Photo )