UN envoy: It’s ‘imperative’ to start Afghan-Taliban talks

  • In this Sept. 9, 2019, photo, a poster of presidential candidate Abdullah Abdullah sits on the street in Kabul, Afghanistan. With an agreement to end America’s longest war on hold, Afghanistan suddenly faces a presidential vote within three weeks amid warnings that it’s not ready. The Taliban, who control or hold sway over roughly half the country, have told Afghans to boycott the vote and warned that rallies and polling stations would be targets. (AP Photo/Ebrahim Noroozi)

UNITED NATIONS — The U.N. envoy for Afghanistan said Tuesday it is imperative for direct talks between the Afghan government and the Taliban to start quickly, and he urged the militant Islamist group to retract its threat to disrupt the upcoming presidential election.