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Afghan government signals may join Taliban talks

The image of Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl of Hailey, Idaho, who is being held captive in Afghanistan, is worn by an audience member as Bergdahl's father Bob, not pictured, speaks at the annual Rolling Thunder rally for POW/MIA awareness, in Washington, Sunday, May 27, 2012. A Taliban spokesman, Shaheen Suhail, in an exclusive telephone interview with The Associated Press from the newly opened Taliban offices in Doha, Qatar, said Thursday, that they are ready to hand over U.S. Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl held captive since 2009 in exchange for five of their senior operatives being held at the Guantanamo Bay prison. The U.S. is scrambling to save talks with the Taliban after angry complaints from Afghanistan President Hamid Karzai. (Associated Press file photo)
The image of Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl of Hailey, Idaho, who is being held captive in Afghanistan, is worn by an audience member as Bergdahl's father Bob, not pictured, speaks at the annual Rolling Thunder rally for POW/MIA awareness, in Washington, Sunday, May 27, 2012. A Taliban spokesman, Shaheen Suhail, in an exclusive telephone interview with The Associated Press from the newly opened Taliban offices in Doha, Qatar, said Thursday, that they are ready to hand over U.S. Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl held captive since 2009 in exchange for five of their senior operatives being held at the Guantanamo Bay prison. The U.S. is scrambling to save talks with the Taliban after angry complaints from Afghanistan President Hamid Karzai. (Associated Press file photo)
Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.The Associated Press
Thursday, June 20, 2013 08:49 am
KABUL, Afghanistan — An Afghan spokesman says President Hamid Karzai is willing to join peace talks with the Taliban if the U.S. follows through with promises he says were made by Secretary of State John Kerry in a phone call.The planned talks were thrown into disarray when Karzai canceled a planned delegation to the newly opened Taliban office in Qatar because he said the U.S. broke commitments that the office would not be seen as an embassy or government-in-exile.

Spokesman Fayeq Wahidi says Kerry promised that the Taliban flag and a nameplate with their former regime's name would be removed and said the U.S. would issue a formal letter supporting the Afghan government.

Wahidi says "we would see no problem in entering into talks with the Taliban in Qatar" once that happens.

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