US government watchdog says only $1.2B out of $7.8B spent on buildings and cars in Afghanistan since 2008 has been used as intended and just $343.2 million worth of such assets “were maintained in good condition”.
Frustration and fear grow over the recent spike in violence and both the Afghan government and Taliban are blaming each other.
The talks, known as the intra-Afghan dialogue, will be the first high-level meeting between Afghanistan government and Taliban after years of fighting.
Skirmishes between Taliban fighters and Afghan security forces recommence after a three-day ceasefire expired in Afghanistan.
US and NATO officials said that US troop strength in Afghanistan is down to nearly 8,600, well ahead of a schedule agreed with Taliban in late February, in part because of concerns about the spread of the coronavirus.
There is cause for cautious optimism so long as troublesome elements within the government and the Taliban are not allowed to derail the process.
Authorities release prisoners from across the country, with approximately 600 of them from notorious Bagram jail near capital Kabul, following insurgents' three-day ceasefire to mark Eid al Fitr.
Kabul plans to free up to 2,000 Taliban inmates as a "goodwill gesture" in response to insurgents' limited ceasefire during festival marking the end of the month of fasting.
The Taliban-claimed attack, which targeted a base in eastern Afghanistan belonging to the country's intelligence service, also wounded at least 40 people and left eight others in critical condition.
The Taliban-claimed blast comes after President Ashraf Ghani had ordered the military to launch action, drawing a line under the defensive stance it adopted as the US withdraws troops and tries to broker talks with the Taliban.
Taliban, which denied involvement in Tuesday's attacks that killed over 50 people, says it is "fully prepared" to counter any strikes ordered by Afghan President Ashraf Ghani.
No one has claimed responsibility for the attack yet and the Taliban denied any involvement.
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