Taliban Announces Start of Spring Offensive in Afghanistan
Afghanistan

Taliban Sending Delegation To Pakistan In Bid To Revive Peace Deal

The peace deal has the potential of ending the 18-year war in Afghanistan.

Taliban Announces Start of Spring Offensive in Afghanistan

The Taliban has announced it is sending a high-level delegation to Pakistan's capital as part of a tour in a push to resurrect an Afghanistan peace deal with the United States.

The deal with Washington seemed imminent just months ago, but a Taliban bombing in Kabul in September led to US President Donald Trump calling off the peace talks.

Russia, China and Iran will also join the Taliban delegation in Pakistan for their tour.

Taliban spokesman Suhail Shaheen said Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar, a co-founder of the Taliban and head of their political office in Qatar, will lead the 11-member delegation during talks with Pakistani officials in Islamabad.

The weeks comes weeks after Mr Trump announced that Washington's talks with the Taliban in Afghanistan are "dead".

Watch: Donald Trump says Afghanistan peace talks are "dead".

It also comes after Pakistani media reported that Zalmay Khalilzad, the Trump administration's special envoy for Afghan peace talks, was in Islamabad for talks with Pakistani officials.

Neither Pakistan's foreign ministry nor the US Embassy would comment on the visits by the Taliban and Mr Khalilzad.

Since Mr Trump ended talks with the Taliban, Pakistan's prime minister Imran Khan and other officials have been urging Washington to resume talks on ending nearly 18 years of fighting in neighbouring Afghanistan where, violence has increased in recent months.

Over the past year, the Afghan government was sidelined in the US-Taliban talks with the Taliban refusing to negotiate with Kabul officials as they consider the Afghan government a US puppet.

Meanwhile, Taliban attacks have continued unabated, even as Afghanistan held presidential elections on Saturday, and weeks after the US-led peace talks collapsed.

Saturday's vote was marred by violence, Taliban threats and widespread allegations of mismanagement and abuse.

It was the fourth time Afghans have gone to the polls to elect a president since 2001 when the US-led coalition ousted the Taliban regime.

Pakistan has said it will try to convince the Taliban to hold talks with Kabul when they reach any deal with Washington.