AA KABUL - The meeting between Afghan politicians and the Taliban which was initially scheduled for April 14 in Qatar was postponed to April 19 as per the decision of the newly-established Reconciliation Leadership Council – which is chaired by President Ashraf Ghani, the Presidential Palace confirmed in a statement on Wednesday.

The council with an initial 37 members, including Chief Executive Abdullah Abdullah, former President Hamid Karzai, former Jihadi leader Abdul Rab Rasul Sayyaf and other prominent Afghan politicians, held its first meeting on Saturday, April 6. Their second meeting was held on Wednesday to follow up the decisions made in their first meeting. According to the President Palace’s statement, the Qatar meeting will be held on April 19 to 21.

Preparations for Doha meeting, completion of the members of the council and the formation of the negotiating team were discussed in this meeting, the statement added. The assigned committees briefed the council delegates on the formation of government delegation for Doha meeting, an inclusive negotiating team and government’s red lines in the peace talks, the statement said, adding fresh meeting will be held next week on Saturday.

Meanwhile, the Taliban on Wednesday announced they will not attend an Afghan government-led peace conference in Kabul. The Afghan government is gearing up to hold a four-day consultative session later this month gathering elders from across the war-ravaged nation to discuss the outline of a proposed peace deal with the Taliban. Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid dubbed the conference as “fake and exhibitory” in a statement published on the group’s propaganda website.

Last week, Mohammad Umer Daudzai, secretary of Afghanistan’s High Peace Council tasked with striking a peace deal with the insurgents, told Anadolu Agency that the Kabul government would like the Taliban to share views for sustainable peace in the country at the Loya Jirga (Grand Session). The Taliban, Afghan and the US officials are set to meet in Doha, Qatar as part of the peace process aimed at ending the 17-year war in Afghanistan.