News / Asia

Afghan Taliban Shuts Doha Office in Protest at Symbol Removal

A general view of the Taliban Afghanistan Political Office in Doha, June 18, 2013. A general view of the Taliban Afghanistan Political Office in Doha, June 18, 2013.
x
A general view of the Taliban Afghanistan Political Office in Doha, June 18, 2013.
A general view of the Taliban Afghanistan Political Office in Doha, June 18, 2013.
VOA News
An Afghan Taliban official says the militant group has stopped using its new office in the Qatari capital Doha in protest at the removal of Taliban symbols from the facility.

The unnamed Taliban official told several news agencies that Taliban representatives have stayed away from the office in recent days and refused to answer phone calls.

The Afghan insurgent group opened the office with Qatari approval on June 18 and displayed a white flag and plaque identifying itself as the "Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan." It was the same name as the Taliban government that ran Afghanistan until a U.S.-led invasion toppled it in 2001.

Qatari authorities quickly removed the flag and sign after Afghan President Hamid Karzai objected to the symbols, calling them an attempt to create a rival Taliban government to his own administration.

The Doha office is meant to serve as a venue for talks between a Karzai-appointed peace council and the Taliban, which has been fighting a decade-long insurgency against the Afghan government and U.S.-led international troops supporting it.

There was no immediate comment on the status of the Taliban office from the Qatari or Afghan governments.

Karzai also has criticized recent U.S. attempts to open separate peace talks with the Taliban.

The New York Times says strains in Karzai's relationship with the United States have led President Barack Obama to consider withdrawing all U.S. troops from Afghanistan next year, rather than sticking with current plans for a long-term U.S. presence.

In a report published on its website Monday, the newspaper cites unnamed American and European officials as saying Obama has become "increasingly frustrated" in negotiations with his Afghan counterpart, resulting in the U.S. leader giving "serious consideration" to the "zero option."

The Times report said the relationship between Obama and Karzai has been "slowly unraveling." It said a June 27 videoconference designed to defuse the tensions "ended badly." The newspaper said Karzai has complained that a separate U.S. peace deal with the Taliban and its Pakistani supporters would leave his government "exposed" to its enemies.

You May Like

Mali's Female Basketball Players Rebound After Islamist Occupation

Islamist extremists ruled northern Mali for most of 2012, imposing strict Sharia law, and now some 18 months later, the region is slowly getting back on its feet More

Video Vietnamese Staging Chinese Product Boycott After Oil Rig Spat

Many Chinese-made products go unsold, for now, with numerous Vietnamese consumers still angry over recent dispute More

Koreas Mark 61st Anniversary of War Armistice

Muted observances on both sides of heavily-armed Demilitarized Zone that separates two decades-long enemies More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Davis K. Thanjan from: New York
July 09, 2013 4:47 PM
The US and Obama are interfering in the peace negotiations between Taliban and Afghanistan. It is the stupidity of Obama administration to indulge in direct negotiations with Taliban, a terrorist group, throwing away the US foreign policy of no negotiations with terrorists and the de facto recognition of Taliban. US has no right for direct negotiations with Taliban excluding President Karzai and Afghanistan. Is there any need to have an office for Taliban in Doha, Qatar so that negotiations with Taliban can be conducted in their office? Is there any need for Qatar to offer an office for Taliban, unless Qatar is a promoter of Taliban? Karzai and Afghanistan are right not to recognize Taliban as a national entity identified with a flag and a sign declaring a new name for Afghanistan. These despicable acts will not be tolerated by any nation or government willing to negotiate peace with terrorists, rebels or opposition in any country.

In Response

by: oldlamb from: guangzhou
July 10, 2013 3:05 AM
The abortive talk between US and Taliban not only in sign of Karzai's government is a discredited regime,but also hints USA troops has fallen in the bog of Taliban, and are eager to take withdrawal from the bog as soon as possible.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Students in Business for Themselvesi
X
Mike O'Sullivan
July 26, 2014 11:04 AM
They're only high school students, but they are making accessories for shoes, fabricating backpacks and doing product photography - all through their own businesses. It's the result of a partnership between a non-profit organization that teaches entrepreneurship and their schools. VOA's Mike O'Sullivan and Deyane Moses met the budding entrepreneurs near Los Angeles.
Video

Video Students in Business for Themselves

They're only high school students, but they are making accessories for shoes, fabricating backpacks and doing product photography - all through their own businesses. It's the result of a partnership between a non-profit organization that teaches entrepreneurship and their schools. VOA's Mike O'Sullivan and Deyane Moses met the budding entrepreneurs near Los Angeles.
Video

Video Astronauts Train in Underwater Lab

In the world’s only underwater laboratory, four U.S. astronauts train for a planned visit to an asteroid. The lab - called Aquarius- is located five kilometers off Key Largo, in southern Florida. Living in close quarters and making excursions only into the surrounding ocean, they try to simulate the daily routine of a crew that will someday travel to collect samples of a rock orbiting far away from earth. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Not Even Monks Spared From Thailand’s Junta-Backed Morality Push

With Thailand’s military government firmly in control after May’s bloodless coup, authorities are carrying out plans they say are aimed at restoring discipline, morality and patriotism to all Thais. The measures include a crackdown on illegal gambling, education reforms to promote students’ moral development, and a new 24-hour phone hotline for citizens to report misbehaving monks. Steve Sandford reports from Bangkok.
Video

Video Virtual Program Teaches Farming Skills

In a fast-changing world beset by unpredictable climate conditions, farmers cannot afford to ignore new technology. Researchers in Australia are developing an online virtual world program to share information about climate change and more sustainable farming techniques for sugar cane growers. As VOA's Zlatica Hoke reports, the idea is to create a wider support network for farmers.
Video

Video Airline Expert: Missile will Show Signature on Debris

The debris field from Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 is spread over a 21-kilometer radius in eastern Ukraine. It is expected to take investigators months to sort through the airplane pieces to learn about the missile that brought down the jetliner and who fired it. VOAs Carolyn Presutti explains how this work will be done.
Video

Video Treatment for Childhood Epilepsy Heats up Medical Marijuana Debate

In the United States, marijuana is classed as an illegal drug by the federal government. But nearly half the states have legalized it, to some degree. Proponents say some strains of marijuana might have exceptional health benefits, for treating pain or inflammation in chronic conditions such as cancer, multiple sclerosis and epilepsy. Shelley Schlender reports on a strain of medical marijuana developed in Colorado that is reputed to reduce seizures in childhood epilepsy
Video

Video Airbus Adds Metal 3D Printed Parts to New Jets

By the end of this year, European aircraft manufacturing consortium Airbus plans to deliver the first of its new, extra-wide-body passenger jets, the A350-XWB. Among other technological innovations, the new plane will also incorporate metal parts made in a 3-D printer. VOA's George Putic has more.
Video

Video AIDS Conference Welcomes Exciting Developments in HIV Treatment, Prevention

Significant strides have been made in recent years toward the treatment and prevention of HIV, the virus that causes AIDS. This year, at the International AIDS Conference, the AIDS community welcomed progress on a new pill that may prevent transmission of the deadly virus. VOA’s Anita Powell reports from Melbourne, Australia.
Video

Video IAEA: Iran Turns its Enriched Uranium Into Less Harmful Form

Iran has converted its stockpiles of enriched uranium into a less dangerous form that is more difficult to use for nuclear weapons, according to the United Nations’ Atomic Energy Agency. The move complies with an interim deal reached with Western powers on Iran's nuclear program last year, in exchange for easing of sanctions. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London.

AppleAndroid