US envoy for Afghanistan Zalmay Khalilzad expressed hope that a peace treaty might be concluded this year and said Russia played a “positive role” in the talks, as US generals who fought there conceded the war was lost long ago. Speaking at the US Institute for Peace (USIP) on Friday, Khalilzad said it would be best for Afghanistan if a peace agreement is reached before the elections, which are scheduled for July. He expressed cautious optimism, but warned that there is “a lot of work” to do still. “We want a peace agreement in Afghanistan. We want to see the war end. We want to see the war end this year,” said Khalilzad, who was appointed peace envoy by the Trump administration in September 2018, and has already met with Taliban officials to negotiate peace.
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