Taliban delegation meets with Western officials in Norway


A 15-member delegation of the Taliban met Monday in the Norwegian capital Oslo with special representatives from Western countries amid the deteriorating humanitarian situation in Afghanistan.


On the second day of the talks hosted by Norway, the Taliban delegation, led by acting Foreign Minister Amir Khan Muttaqi, held a meeting with representatives from the US, UK, Norway, Germany, Italy, Qatar, France and the European Union.


The meeting focused on discussions on the economy, humanitarian aid, security, central bank operations, health and other relevant issues, Abdul Qahar Balkhi, a spokesman for the interim Afghan Foreign Ministry, said on Twitter.


Discussions are still in progress, he added, noting a full report would be available later.


Concerned about the "grave" humanitarian situation in Afghanistan, Norway said on Jan. 21 that it would be hosting Taliban representatives for talks in Oslo from Jan. 23-25.


Foreign Minister Anniken Huitfeldt said Norway is "extremely concerned about the grave situation in Afghanistan, where millions of people are facing a full-blown humanitarian disaster."


"In order to be able to help the civilian population in Afghanistan, it is essential that both the international community and Afghans from various parts of society engage in dialogue with the Taliban," she added.

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