Pakistan’s foreign minister urged senior Taliban leaders Tuesday to start delayed peace talks with Kabul, telling them the Afghanistan war has “no military solution” just hours after the insurgents claimed another deadly bombing.
Kabul and the Taliban were supposed to have begun talks in March, but are at loggerheads over a controversial prisoner swap that includes hundreds of militant inmates tied to high-profile attacks conducted over the past 19 years.
“Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi underscored Prime Minister Imran Khan’s consistent stance that there was no military solution to the conflict in Afghanistan and that a political settlement was the only way forward,” the Pakistan foreign ministry said in a statement.
The Islamabad meeting between Qureshi and the Taliban delegation led by Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar, the group’s co-founder who spent eight years in Pakistani custody, came shortly after a suicide bombing near an army base in the northern Afghan province of Balkh.
The Taliban-claimed assault comes amid continued violence in Afghanistan, with insurgents conducting daily attacks across the country and in Kabul.
It killed two civilians and one commando and wounded more than 40 other people, military spokesman for the region Hanif Rezayee said. Many houses were damaged or