Afghan President Ashraf Ghani has instructed the armed forces to observe a three-day ceasefire during the Eid al-Fitr holidays, hours after the Taliban declared their own ceasefire.
“The President of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan and the Supreme Commander of the Armed Forces have instructed the Afghan Defense and Security Forces to observe the ceasefire in respect of the Eid days,” the presidential palace said in a statement.
Ghani said that Taliban violence was indefensible given the withdrawal under way of international forces from the country, a move the militant group had long demanded.
“On behalf of the people of Afghanistan, we once again call on the Taliban to respond to the legitimate demand of the people for a permanent ceasefire and return to the negotiating table, so that our people can achieve their fundamental right which is living in a just and lasting peace,” the statement added.
The Taliban had earlier announced a three-day ceasefire on Sunday night.