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UN-Taliban Talks Fail

A United Nations delegation left Kabul on Sunday after negotiations with the Taliban militia failed to secure the return of foreign aid agencies expelled from the country after workers refused to confine themselves to substandard housing and headquarters.

UN humanitarian coordinator for Afghanistan Bronek Szynalsky said that he was not convinced Taliban officials were open to discussing the relocation issue. He said the Taliban has left the UN little room to negotiate on behalf of the 35 non-governmental organizations expelled from Kabul. “We unfortunately were not given too much of an opportunity to discuss the alternatives for the NGO’s eventual return,” he said. “It was very disappointing to us.”

Taliban officials have a different perception of the events that took place on Saturday. Planning Minister Qari Deen Mohammed told reporters in Kabul that the Taliban is ready to negotiate anything that will benefit the Afghan people. He said both sides are willing to resolve the crisis.

Although no progress was made, according to Szynalsky, talks will probably resume next week.

Media Resources: Afghan Online Press - August 2, 1998



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