Death toll from Afghanistan bombing rises to at least 150

More than a thousand people demonstrated Friday demanding more security in the capital following a powerful truck bomb attack in the city that killed 90 people and wounded more than 450.

"We have seen other attempts at peace but majority haven't been here in the Afghan capital, majority have been outside of the country", Glasse said.

The conference, labelled the "Kabul Process", aims to build global support for peace. "What we need is an agreement on regional security".

He said the recent attacks have raised questions about the security institutions and their abilities, adding that there were circles within the government and security institutions that have links to the Taliban.

The Taliban has steadily expanded its reach since U.S. and North Atlantic Treaty Organisation forces formally concluded their combat mission at the end of 2014 and transitioned to a support and counterterrorism role.

Ghani said if the Taliban did not soon begin negotiations, he would seek new sanctions against the group as a sponsor of terrorism. However, this was their last chance, Ghani said.

But in February, the UN Security Council lifted sanctions on him, paving the way for his return to Afghanistan where he has called on the Taliban to come to the negotiating table.

"We are ready to help address the shared threat of violent extremists to the region but Afghanistan should desist from externalising its internal problems", the Ambassador to the United Nations told Voice of America. In the last two years, 11,000 foreign fighters have arrived in Afghanistan to fight for Islamic State, he said, while more than 75,000 Afghans have been killed or wounded in 2015 and 2016.

A spokesman for the Taliban said he was not prepared to make immediate comment on the conference.

USA military commanders have proposed sending 3,000 to 5,000 more advisers to Afghanistan in a bid to break the "stalemate".

A Foreign Office official said Pakistan was attending the conference as part of its consistent approach that a solution to the Afghan problem could be found through Afghan owned and Afghan led peace process.

U.S. Charge d'Affaires Hugo Llorens, who is overseeing the American embassy as no new ambassador has been nominated by Trump, said the conference was a chance to send the message that "the enemies of Afghanistan can not win".

Past attempts at peace talks have failed.

  • Leroy Wright