Afghan officials as well as representatives from the Taliban militia and other factions are reportedly meeting north of Paris.
The secretive meetings in Chantilly on December 20-21 are not expected to produce an immediate, concrete breakthrough toward a possible peace and reconciliation agreement.
The event is being organized by a French think tank.
It is to be attended by representatives from the Taliban and Hizb-e Islami, figures from the former Northern Alliance who fought Taliban and other militant groups, and members of the Afghan High Peace Council.
That body was appointed by Afghan President Hamid Karzai and is tasked with negotiating with the Taliban.
Efforts are being stepped up to reach an Afghan settlement as NATO prepares to pull out most combat troops in 2014.
Based on reporting by AP and Franceinfo.fr