"The real significance of Moscow, in my view, is that it has somewhat isolated the Afghan government", said Richard Olson, a former special representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan for the United States. "The Global Terrorism Index said Afghanistan accounted for a quarter of all the world's deaths from terrorism in 2017, and that the Taliban was responsible for hundreds of attacks during the year".
The Afghan Taliban has said that despite the ongoing talks with the United States and other regional powers, it had "not yet reached" any conclusion that would entail an immediate end to hostilities against America and its allies, according to a media report.
"They made it clear to us that we (Taliban) have to talk to the USA and Afghan government", the Taliban leader said.
US Special Envoy Zalmay Khalilzad denied this assertion, tweeting: "I've heard some Taliban officials claim we have a troop withdrawal timetable for Afghanistan".
The Afghan government, which was not invited in last week's Moscow talks, slammed Russian Federation for allowing the United Nations blacklisted Taliban members to take part in the talks. "I would be wary of taking that and extrapolating off that and saying they're now on board with the peace process", said Jason Campbell, who was the Pentagon's Afghanistan country director until past year and is now at the RAND Corporation think-tank.
Pictures of the conference showed Sher Mohammad Abbas Stanekzai, the head of the Taliban delegation, standing shoulder to shoulder with Karzai and other Afghan leaders, many of them Ghani's political rivals.
Speaking after Reuters reported the shift, Khalilzad confirmed at a forum in Washington that "there is a positive change in recent times" by Islamabad.
President Ghani's anger about the meeting was obvious from various statements, in which he called it an academic exercise by those with "no executive authority".
Joy Villa dresses as Trump's border wall at 2019 Grammys
This year, Villa kept things equally political on the red carpet and explained why she wore the controversial dress. Last year, she wore a graphic white gown with the shape of an unborn fetus and the printed slogan, "I choose life".
"That is a red line, and I think that's a policy of the (US) president as well". Some believe the chances the USA would reverse direction and return to Afghanistan are unlikely at best.
Mr Khalilzad has in recent months held multiple meetings with Taliban officials in Qatar, where the group's senior leaders have an office in the capital Doha.
Khalilzad said he has pressed the Taliban to agree to a permanent cease-fire as a step toward ending the war, but they have resisted, arguing that it would remove their leverage and reduce the Afghan government's incentive to make concessions in direct negotiations.
Afghan political analyst Mushtaq Rahim said there was a backlash in Afghan civil society against those who attended. The problem is that so far it has led more of a parallel process than a helpful process because the Afghan government has not been at these Moscow-led talks.
"For Moscow, its initiative represents an effort to get closer to the elusive intra-Afghan dialogue that all sides keep talking about", said Michael Kugelman, deputy director of the Asia Program at the Washington-based Wilson Center research organization.
"If there is no progress on the peace track, elections will take place, and we are doing what we can to support the preparations for credible elections", he added.
On the heels of negotiations with the U.S.in Doha, Qatar, from January 21 through January 26, Taliban leaders met with a Russian delegation for two days in Moscow earlier this week.
Islamabad, running short of foreign exchange reserves and in talks with the International Monetary Fund over what would be its 13th bailout since the 1980s, says it can not afford to see Afghanistan slide into chaos just as Pakistan is trying to attract foreign investors to shore up its own economy. He also clarified that the Taliban's negotiators agreed to the condition, but not its leadership.
As far as performers go, fans of Ariana Grande might be disappointed to learn that she dropped out of the ceremony. A representative for the Grammys didn't return an email seeking clarification about the tribute.
The burn centre at Loyola University Medical Center in Chicago said it treated eight people who attempted the exercise. The spectacular frosty mist, as shown in tweets by successful challengers, is tempting to try, but don't get tricked.
Reliable sources say that if the team starts shooting for the remake from the beginning, a June 2019 is impossible. However, it now appears that the production house and the filmmaker had severe creative differences over the film.
Both Johnson, 31, and Morris, 29, are in the past year of their contracts, as well, so they will not be long for their new teams. The New Orleans Pelicans are releasing forward/center Markieff Morris (neck), reports Shams Charania of The Athletic .
Unlike the 5G talks during last year's Snapdragon 845 announcement , this year 5G is much closer to becoming a reality. On Monday, Verizon and Samsung said they plan to bring a 5G smartphone to the U.S. market in the first half of 2019.
Had Ormsby been able to match Law's eagle on the final hole, he would have forced a playoff, but he could only manage a birdie. Celine Boutier of France finished two in front of her nearest challengers.
In the Sky Sports studio, Jamie Carragher described it as "criminal" negligence from Chelsea left-back Marcos Alonso. Aguero was lurking in the six-yard box and punished the former Everton midfielder with a sharp turn and shot.
Their last seven opponents have been under 70 points and they'll be in a great position to win if they can make that eight games. Washington will look to bounce back next Saturday when they travel to play in-state rival, Washington State.
Toronto Raptors sign forward Malcolm Miller
Boucher and Miller were previously playing on two-way player contracts and have spent time with the Raptors' G-League affiliate. While the term wasn't disclosed, it is reported to be a multi-year contract, according to Blake Murphy of The Athletic .
French "Yellow Vests" Clash With Police in Nantes
Police used batons and fired tear gas in Paris to disperse demonstrators, some of whom threw debris at riot police hunkered down. The protests have brought hundreds of thousands of people out onto the streets all over France.
Subaru Legacy Debuts With Fresh Look, Big Screen
Eight standard airbags are included, and Subaru is predicting a IIHS Top Safety Pick+ rating after testing later this year. There's now an 11.6 inch infotainment system in the centre console, alongside support for Android Auto and Apple CarPlay.
Litecoin Traded Up 5% This Week (LTC)
Litecoin (CURRENCY: LTC ) traded up 12.5% against the dollar during the 1-day period ending at 8:00 AM Eastern on January 16th. The crypto industry market cap has risen by nearly 7 percent in the past 24 hours, from $114 billion to $ 121 billion .
Canada gains 66,800 jobs, blowing away forecasts
Overall, employment gains were driven entirely by private sector employees while the number of self-employed decreased. There was a surge of 66,800 net new jobs across the country, but many Canadians were still left searching for work.
Winter weather advisory in effect until 9 pm Sunday
The storm will arrive overnight Monday into Tuesday with flurries before snow becomes steadier sometime around 8 a.m. Snow is forecast to transition to an icy mix in this corridor from late Monday through Monday night. "I love it.