Taliban Rejects Call for Ceasefire During Ramadan

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The Taliban has rejected a government call for a ceasefire in Afghanistan for the holy month of Ramadan, saying a truce is “not rational” as they ramp up attacks on government forces.

Afghan President Ashraf Ghani had appealed to the armed group to lay down arms for Ramadan, which began on Friday, to allow the authorities to focus on tackling the coronavirus pandemic.

In a tweet late on Thursday night, Taliban spokesman Suhail Shaheen said a ceasefire would be possible if a potential peace process was being implemented “fully”, but “hurdles” meant the Taliban would not yet lay down arms.

“Asking for ceasefire is not rational and convincing,” wrote Shaheen.

Citing disagreements over the peace process and a delayed prisoner exchange as reasons to keep fighting, the Taliban spokesman accused the Afghan government of putting prisoners’ lives at risk during the outbreak.

Afghanistan has detected more than 1,300 cases of the virus, but health experts say the number could be higher as testing is limited and Afghanistan’s weak healthcare system would struggle with a widespread outbreak.

Source: Al Jazeera

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Flora Mitumba
Email: info@faceofmalawi.com

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