Obama: New Taliban office an important first step

Obama: New Taliban office an important first step

Credit: Getty Images

WASHINGTON, DC - MAY 23: U.S. President Barack Obama listens as Medea Benjamin, an activist from the organization called Code Pink, shouts at him while he speaks at the National Defense University May 23, 2013 in Washington, DC. Obama used the speech to outline and justify his administration's counterterrorism policy, including increased cooperation with Congress on matters of national security, added transparency regarding the use of drones, and a review of current threats facing the United States. (Photo by Win McNamee/Getty Images)

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by Associated Press

WHAS11.com

Posted on June 18, 2013 at 11:34 AM

 ENNISKILLEN, Northern Ireland (AP) -- President Barack Obama says the opening of a Taliban political office in Qatar is an important first step toward reconciliation between the Taliban and Afghanistan's government. But he says the process won't be quick or easy. He's predicting there will be bumps along the way.
 
   Obama says the Taliban still must denounce al-Qaida. He's praising Afghan President Hamid Karzai for taking a courageous step by sending representatives to Qatar to discuss peace with the Taliban.
 
   Obama spoke after meeting with French President Francois Hollande at the G-8 summit in Northern Ireland.
 
   His comments come after American officials announced the U.S. will begin formal meetings with the Taliban within days at the new Taliban office in Doha, Qatar.
 

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