November 9, 2018 / 2:16 PM / 6 months ago

Taliban says not ready for direct talks with Kabul

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov and Sher Mohammad Abbas Stanakzai, head of the Taliban’s political council in Qatar, pose for a family photo with members of delegations during the multilateral peace talks on Afghanistan in Moscow, Russia November 9, 2018. REUTERS/Sergei Karpukhin

ALMATY (Reuters) - The Taliban are not ready for direct talks with the Kabul government and will negotiate with the United States instead, Russia’s Interfax news agency quoted Sher Mohammad Abbas Stanakzai, head of the Taliban delegation, as saying on Friday.

A Taliban delegation on Friday attended a diplomatic conference in Russia for the first time, but the Kabul government sent no official representative, and the sides reported no progress.

Reporting by Denis Pinchuk; Writing by Olzhas Auyezov; Editing by Hugh Lawson

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