Taliban deny peace `overtures` announced by Petraeus

A Taliban spokesman on Tuesday flatly denied a statement from the commander of NATO troops in Afghanistan that insurgent groups have made overtures about laying down their weapons.

Kandahar: A Taliban spokesman on Tuesday
flatly denied a statement from the commander of NATO troops in
Afghanistan that insurgent groups have made overtures about
laying down their weapons.

A Taliban spokesman dismissed US General David
Petreaus`s comments as "completely baseless", saying the
insurgents would not "negotiate with foreign invaders or their
puppet government".

"We want full and unconditional withdrawal of all
invading forces from our country," Zabiullah Mujahid told AFP
by telephone from an unknown location.

Petraeus, who commands more than 150,000 NATO and US
troops in Afghanistan, told AFP on Tuesday that many small
insurgent groups had already made "overtures" to NATO forces
about quitting the fight.

"There have already been 20 or so overtures from
small groups around the country," he said, referring to a
programme aimed at reintegrating mid-level Taliban commanders
and grassroots fighters back into Afghan society.

PTI

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