Kabul: Taliban have announced a three-day ceasefire with Afghan government forces, for the first time since 2001.
The decision has been taken due to Eid-Ul-Fitr which will be celebrated by all the Muslims around the world later this month. This is the first time the insurgents have agreed on a ceasefire since the 2001 US-led invasion and comes days after a unilateral truce by government troops.
The group said it would stop all offensive operations during the holiday, except against foreign forces. The announcement came hours after Taliban fighters killed 19 Afghan policemen in Kunduz province.
Afghan President Ashraf Ghani said the Taliban move was an opportunity for the militants to realize their violent campaign was not winning the hearts and minds but further alienating the Afghan people from their cause. Government forces will not stop fighting other militants, like the Islamic State (IS) group.
The Afghan governmentís unconditional truce follows a meeting of clerics, who earlier this week issued a fatwa condemning militant violence as un-Islamic. The clerics were themselves targeted in a suicide attack claimed by IS, which killed 14 people outside their peace tent in Kabul this week.