Afghan President Hamid Karzai said Thursday he is willing to hold talks with Taliban chief, hoping to bring peace to the country.
We must talk to the Taliban as an Afghan necessity. The fight against terrorism and extremism cannot be won by fighting alone, Karzai said.
Personally, I would definitely talk to Mullah Omar. Whatever it takes to bring peace to Afghanistan, I, as the Afghan president, will do it.
He also said the effort must have the full backing of the United States and its international partners.
Karzai offered to negotiate directly with Omar in November 2008, promising to provide security for the Taliban leader if he was willing to come to Afghanistan or to negotiate for peace.
The Taliban said at the time they would not enter into any negotiations as long as international forces were still in Afghanistan.
President Barack Obama has said the U.S. must open the door to Taliban members who abandon violence.
He announced on Tuesday that the U.S. will send 30,000 more troops to combat the growing Taliban insurgency and if all went well, the U.S. could begin withdrawing troops in July 2011.
Karzai said he was not upset by the July 2011 date because it would give an impetus and a boost for Afghans to work toward taking control of their own nation.
He also said it was time to offer peace to Taliban members and end the insurgency.