Afghans clean a broken window of a destroyed house after an attack in Kabul, Afghanistan, Tuesday, Jan. 15, 2019. A Taliban suicide bomber detonated an explosive-laden vehicle in the capital Kabul on Monday evening, according to officials. (Associated Press/Rahmat Gul)

Editor's Note: This article originally appeared on Radio Free Europe/Radio Free Liberty.

An official of the Taliban militant group, which now reportedly controls nearly half of Afghanistan, says the militant group is not seeking to rule Afghanistan alone in any future government structure and wants to co-exist with current institutions.

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If your words of the day today were "cautious optimism," you're in luck, because Army Col. Dave Zinn, who recently returned from Afghanistan, offered exactly that to reporters on Wednesday.

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Seventeen years after the U.S. military-led invasion of Afghanistan — after the deaths of more than 2,400 American troops, tens of thousands of Afghan soldiers and police and untold numbers of civilians — the prospect of a truce with the Taliban appears to be inching closer to reality.

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U.S. troops walk from a Chinook helicopter in Uruzgan province, Afghanistan July 7, 2017. (Reuters/Omar Sobhani)

KABUL/PESHAWAR, Pakistan (Reuters) - Taliban officials said U.S. negotiators on Saturday agreed a draft peace deal stipulating the withdrawal of foreign forces from Afghanistan within 18 months of the agreement being signed.

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(U.S. Marine Corps/Lance Cpl. Darien J. Bjorndal)

KABUL (Reuters) - The Taliban killed more than 100 members of the Afghan security forces inside a military compound in central Maidan Wardak province on Monday, a senior defense official said.

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KABUL (Reuters) - Afghan Chief Executive Abdullah Abdullah said on Wednesday that the Taliban's refusal to involve the government in peace talks means the end to a conflict that has lasted 17 years can only remain a dream.

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