Afghanistan on Saturday evening extended its unilateral ceasefire with the Taliban. The government’s earlier ceasefire was to end on June 20. “The details about the extended ceasefire will soon be shared with the people,” said President Ashraf Ghani in a televised address, according to TOLO News. “But I order the forces across the country to be ready for any attack to defend the country and the people.”
Ghani urged militants to follow the government’s lead and participate in peace talks. He said the government was ready for “comprehensive negotiations” with the Taliban. “All those issues and demands that have been put forth we are ready to discuss them at the peace talks,” said the president, according to BBC.
However, the militant organisation said the truce would end on Sunday night and operations against the security forces will resume, BBC reported.
This comes hours after 25 people were killed in an explosion at a gathering of Afghan security forces, civilians and Taliban in the eastern Nangarhar province. The group was celebrating an unprecedented ceasefire between the security forces and the militants. Both the Taliban and the Afghan government have announced a ceasefire to allow their fighters to celebrate Eid.