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Afghan delegation to attend peace talks in Russia: official

AFP  |  Kabul 

An Afghan delegation will attend international talks on the war-torn country in this month, officials said Monday, as the consider whether to participate.

announced Saturday it would host the event on November 9 in the Russian capital -- even as the engages the in nascent bilateral talks to end the 17-year conflict.

Afghanistan's High Peace Council, a government body responsible for reconciliation efforts with the militants, would send four representatives to the meeting, told AFP.

The Afghan foreign ministry, however, remained evasive about whether it would dispatch a delegation to the conference, which will focus on kickstarting peace talks between and the

"We are still negotiating with the Russian officials," said.

"We welcome any peace effort that is Afghan-led." Taliban said the militant group was still mulling whether to go.

has also invited representatives from the as well as India, Iran, China, and five former Soviet republics in

Pakistan, which has long been accused of providing support to the Afghan Taliban, would "definitely" attend, told AFP.

The did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

The meeting was initially scheduled to take place in September, but was postponed after insisted that the process should be Afghan-led. The meeting comes at a sensitive time.

Newly-appointed US has been trying to convince the Taliban to agree to negotiate an end to the war and there are fears the Russian multi-lateral meeting could derail those efforts.

A watchdog last week said Kabul's control of had slipped in recent months as local security forces suffered record casualties while making minimal or no progress against the Taliban.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Mon, November 05 2018. 17:05 IST