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Karzai to talk with Taliban

France: Afghanist- an's President Hamid Karzai hopes to hold peace talks with the Taliban within 100 days if he is re-elected, he told the French daily Le Figaro in an interview published on Monday.

But Karzai insisted he would not sit down with any faction that refuses to cut its links with Al-Qaeda or fails to respect the Afghan constitution.

He implicitly confirmed Saudi Arabia is involved in trying to broker talks between his government and the Islamist militia, who were driven from power in 2001 and are now fighting an insurgency against Afghan and NATO forces.

Karzai also said he thought that US President Barack Obama was more ready than his predecessor George W. Bush to countenance talks with the Taliban in order to find a way out of the eight-year-old conflict.

Asked whether he was ready to talk to the Taliban, Karzai replied: "It's something that I'll do in these first 100 days.

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