With an increase in clashes, targeted attacks and bombings over the past few days, Special Representative for Afghanistan Reconciliation Zalmay Khalilzad called for a reduction in violence on Sunday.
“Over the last few days, there has been a clear rise in violence in Afghanistan. This escalation is regrettable as Afghans, including many civilians, are losing their lives,” Khalilzad wrote on Twitter.
With the peace talks being held in the Qatari capital of Doha, Khalilzad urged the Afghan government and the Taliban to refrain from violence.
“Given the recent start of Afghanistan Peace Negotiations, it is imperative all sides reduce violence significantly,” he added.
Former president Hamid Karzai also expressed concern about the increased violence and said it was “deeply worrying.”
“The latest airstrikes in Kunduz and explosions in Paktia and Balkh, which caused casualties are highly condemnable. I urge the Afghan sides to fully focus on achieving quick results in peace talks and to bring an immediate end to violence against the Afghan people.”
Acting Minister of Defence Asadullah Khalid had said that the increase in violence may be a Taliban tactic for “making gains and bargaining better” with the Afghan government’s peace delegation.
Over the past few days, several provinces have witnessed heavy fighting with reports coming in from Balkh, Kandahar, Kunduz, Logar, Nimruz, Paktika and Wardak provinces.