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3-day ceasefire begins in Afghanistan as Taliban & Kabul ‘preparing for peace talks’

3-day ceasefire begins in Afghanistan as Taliban & Kabul ‘preparing for peace talks’

A three-day ceasefire between Taliban and government forces began on Friday in Afghanistan during the Muslim festival of Eid al-Adha. A car bomb killed at least 17 people in the country’s east just hours before the truce, while the Taliban denied any involvement, AFP reported.

The third official truce in nearly 19 years of war is slated to last for the duration of Eid al-Adha. President Ashraf Ghani and the Taliban have both signaled that peace talks could begin straight after Eid, amid widespread calls for the warring parties to extend the ceasefire.

Under a deal signed by the Taliban and the US in February, “intra-Afghan” talks were slated to start in March. The negotiations were delayed amid political infighting in Kabul and as a contentious prisoner exchange dragged on.