Arrow-right Camera

The Spokesman-Review Newspaper The Spokesman-Review

Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
Partly Cloudy Night 33° Partly Cloudy
News >  World

Afghan president calls for Eid cease-fire, Taliban to reply

In this June 16, 2018, file photo, Taliban fighters gather with residents to celebrate a three-day cease fire marking the Islamic holiday of Eid al-Fitr, in Nangarhar province, east of Kabul, Afghanistan. On Sunday, Aug. 19, 2018, Afghan President Ashraf Ghani announced a conditional cease-fire with Taliban insurgents for the duration of the Eid al-Adha holiday. Ghani made the announcement Sunday during celebrations of the 99th anniversary of Afghanistan's independence. (Ramat Gul / Associated Press)
In this June 16, 2018, file photo, Taliban fighters gather with residents to celebrate a three-day cease fire marking the Islamic holiday of Eid al-Fitr, in Nangarhar province, east of Kabul, Afghanistan. On Sunday, Aug. 19, 2018, Afghan President Ashraf Ghani announced a conditional cease-fire with Taliban insurgents for the duration of the Eid al-Adha holiday. Ghani made the announcement Sunday during celebrations of the 99th anniversary of Afghanistan's independence. (Ramat Gul / Associated Press)
Associated Press

KABUL, Afghanistan – Afghan President Ashraf Ghani has called for a conditional cease-fire with Taliban insurgents for the duration of the Eid al-Adha holiday.

President Ghani made the announcement Sunday during celebrations of the 99th anniversary of Afghanistan’s independence in the capital of Kabul.

“The cease-fire should be observed from both sides, and its continuation and duration also depend on the Taliban’s stand,” Ghani stressed. He added that should the Taliban agree, it would be observed over Monday and Tuesday, the Eid holidays. He said he hoped extensions could also be agreed upon to make it last until Nov. 20, which will mark the birth anniversary of Prophet Muhammad.

The Taliban did not immediately respond to the announcement.

The government had previously announced a cease-fire with the Taliban during the Eid al-Fitr holiday in June. The Taliban accepted that three-day cease-fire, but later rejected a call by the president to extend it.

President Ghani’s call comes just a day after the leader of the Afghan Taliban said that there will be no peace in Afghanistan as long as the “foreign occupation” continues, reiterating the group’s position that the country’s 17-year war can only be brought to an end through direct talks with the United States.

In a message released on the occasion of the Eid al-Adha holiday, Maulvi Haibatullah Akhunzadah said Saturday that the group remains committed to “Islamic goals,” the sovereignty of Afghanistan and ending the war.

The Taliban have resurged in recent years, seizing districts across the country and regularly carrying out large-scale attacks.

Earlier this month, the Taliban launched a major assault on the city of Ghazni, just 75 miles from Kabul. Afghan security forces battled the militants inside the city for five days, as the U.S. carried out airstrikes and sent advisers to help ground forces.

The battle for Ghazni killed at least 100 members of the Afghan security forces and 35 civilians, according to Afghan officials.

The Spokesman-Review Newspaper

Local journalism is essential.

Give directly to The Spokesman-Review's Northwest Passages community forums series -- which helps to offset the costs of several reporter and editor positions at the newspaper -- by using the easy options below. Gifts processed in this system are not tax deductible, but are predominately used to help meet the local financial requirements needed to receive national matching-grant funds.

Subscribe to the Coronavirus newsletter

Get the day’s latest Coronavirus news delivered to your inbox by subscribing to our newsletter.



Annual health and dental insurance enrollment period open now

 (Courtesy Washington Healthplanfinder)
Sponsored

2020 has been a stressful year for myriad reasons.