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DATE=7/20/99 TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT NUMBER=2-251959 TITLE=AFGHAN PEACE TALKS (L-ONLY) BYLINE=SARAH HORNER DATELINE=ISLAMABAD CONTENT= VOICED AT: INTRO: U-N SPONSORED PEACE TALKS BETWEEN AFGHANISTAN'S WARRING FACTIONS HAVE ENDED IN UZBEKISTAN WITHOUT A MAJOR BREAKTHROUGH. AS SARAH HORNER REPORTS FROM ISLAMABAD, BOTH SIDES ARE PREPARING FOR A NEW ROUND OF FIGHTING. TEXT: THE PAKISTAN-BASED AFGHAN ISLAMIC PRESS (A-I-P) QUOTES A TALEBAN SPOKESMAN AS SAYING TALEBAN INFORMATION MINISTER MULLAH AMIR KHAN MUTTAQI PRESENTED SIX-POINTS AT THE PEACE TALKS IN THE UZBEK CAPITAL, TASHKENT. THE MINISTER ASKED THE OPPOSITION NORTHERN ALLIANCE TO NOT DESTROY IMPORTANT STRUCTURES DURING FIGHTING, TO STOP ROCKET ATTACKS ON CIVILIANS, AND TO CEASE USING ANTI-PERSONNEL MINES. HE REQUESTED BETTER TREATMENT FOR TALEBAN PRISONERS-OF-WAR AND FOR THE OPPOSITION TO SUPPORT THE TALEBAN'S ADMINISTRATION. MULLAH MUTTAQI ALSO CONDEMNED THE ALLIANCE'S SUPPORT OF RECENT AMERICAN FINANCIAL AND COMMERCIAL SANCTIONS IMPOSED ON THE TALEBAN. A-I-P QUOTES AN OPPOSITION SPOKESMAN WHO SAYS THE ALLIANCE SUBMITTED A PROPOSAL FOR A CEASE-FIRE. THE NEWS AGENCY SAYS BOTH SIDES SAY THEY HAVE TO REFER ALL THE POINTS MADE AT TASHKENT TO THEIR RESPECTIVE LEADERSHIPS. THE MEETING BETWEEN THE TALEBAN -- WHICH CONTROLS 90-PERCENT OF AFGHANISTAN -- AND THE OPPOSITION NORTHERN ALLIANCE -- WHICH CONTROLS THE REMAINING 10-PERCENT -- TOOK PLACE UNDER THE AUSPICES OF THE SO-CALLED "SIX-PLUS-TWO GROUP". THE U-N SPONSORED GROUP COMPRISES AFGHANISTAN'S SIX NEIGHBORS, RUSSIA AND THE UNITED STATES. IT IS WORKING TO FIND A PEACEFUL SOLUTION TO AFGHANISTAN'S 10-YEAR CIVIL WAR. THE SIX-PLUS-TWO MEETING WAS CHAIRED BY THE U-N SPECIAL ENVOY TO AFGHANISTAN, LAKHDAR BRAHIMI. MONDAY, THE GROUP URGED THE TALEBAN AND THE NORTHERN ALLIANCE TO END THE CONFLICT IN AFGHANISTAN. SEVERAL MEETINGS IN THE PAST 18-MONTHS HAVE FAILED TO PRODUCE A LASTING PEACE AGREEMENT. DURING THIS TIME, TALEBAN FORCES HAVE EXTENDED THEIR CONTROL OVER AFGHANISTAN AND NOW FACE ONE REMAINING OBSTACLE -- OPPOSITION LEADER AHMAD SHAH MASSOOD. COMMANDER MASSOOD IS HEADQUARTERED IN THE PANJSHIR VALLEY, 90-KILOMETERS NORTH OF THE AFGHAN CAPITAL, KABUL. FROM THIS STRONGHOLD, HE HAS REMAINED A THORN IN THE TALEBAN'S SIDE AND DEFEATED ITS ATTEMPTS TO TAKE CONTROL OF ALL AFGHANISTAN. REPORTS FROM AFGHANISTAN SAY TALEBAN FORCES ARE BUILDING UP NORTH OF KABUL AND PLAN TO SOON MAKE A MAJOR PUSH AGAINST COMMANDER MASSOOD. (SIGNED) NEB/SLH/RAE 20-Jul-99 9:48 AM EDT (1348 UTC) NNNN Source: Voice of America .





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