Afghanistan's perennial runner-up will not be content with second place this time.
President Ashraf Ghani orders release of initial 1,500, with other 3,500 fighters to be set free in parallel with progress in intra-Afghan talks. Taliban says the plan violates its peace deal with US.
Top US negotiator, Zalmay Khalilzad is known to have connections with shadowy figures in Afghanistan and experts are struggling to understand what exactly he has agreed with the Taliban.
Hundreds of people had assembled at two venues inside the presidential palace complex to watch the swearing-in ceremonies for President Ashraf Ghani and challenger Abdullah Abdullah, when the blasts were heard.
Threat of parallel governments in Afghanistan is jeopardising the nascent process to end a war that has killed tens of thousands of people.
Election commission declares incumbent Ashraf Ghani winner of disputed presidential election held almost five months ago, but rivals say commission and outcome "have no legitimacy."
The negotiations appear to give the Taliban some degree of political legitimacy in Afghanistan following the complete withdrawal of US forces and in exchange the insurgent group is expected to stop harbouring 'terrorists'.
An escalated conflict between the US and Iran will reverberate in Pakistan and Afghanistan.
Afghans are waiting for the outcome of endless meetings between the United States and the Taliban.
US President Donald Trump said last month that he planned to reduce the overall troop presence to 8,600, with further reductions possible. Approximately 13,000 US troops are currently in Afghanistan.
A hasty peace deal that undermined the Afghan government and rewarded the Taliban's arrogant zero-sum game was always doomed for failure. All that can be changed moving forward.
Afghan Interior Ministry spokesman says that the Taliban singled out 45 old men from a funeral procession carrying the deceased employee's coffin to a graveyard.
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