Uzbek FM meets Afghan Taliban chief, urges attendance at peace talks
Taliban officials said Kamilov handed Omar in the southern city of Kandahar a goodwill message from Uzbek President Islam Karimov calling for "the establishment of good neighbourly" and friction-free relations.
"Return of peace and security to Afghanistan and solution of its problems serves the interests of neigbouring countries, peace and stability of region," the Taliban official radio Shariat quoted Omar as telling the Uzbek minister.
Taliban spokesman Wakil Ahmad said Kamilov invited the Taliban authorities to take part in the next round talks of the UN-sponsored group in Uzbekistan, for which a date is yet to be set.
The Taliban would accept if invited as the representative of Afghanistan's government, the radio said.
Kamilov's visit to the Taliban southern stronghold of Kandahar was the first by a top level official of Uzbekistan, which has been accused in the past by the Islamic militia of backing their northern-based rivals.
The two sides also discussed economic relations between Uzbekistan and Afghanistan.
The Taliban regime controls about 80 percent of Afghanistan. The northern opposition alliance is fighting to thwart its aim to take the entire territory.
Copyright (c) 1999 Agence France-Presse
Received by NewsEdge Insight: 06/01/1999 12:43:08
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