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Taliban urges US to stick on troop withdrawal

30 Jun 2020 Afghanistan Times

AT News KABUL: The US Secretary of State, Mike Pompeo in a meeting with the Taliban Qatar based representatives has discussed American troop pullout, intra-Afghan negotiations, prisoners release and reduction in violence, which has recently been increased in Afghanistan. The discussion made through a video conference, which according to the Taliban spokesman, it was in a bid to remove hurdles in the path to the peace talks The Taliban have once again emphasized on timely withdrawal of the US and Coalition Forces, according to the militants spokesman in Doha, Suhail Shaheen. This is as the Afghan government accused the Taliban of intensification of attacks on the Afghan security forces. In series of tweets, Shaheen said that the US Secretary has acknowledged the depletion in the level of fighting, with halting attacks on big cities and military bases. “The war-line should be reduced by all parties,” he added, quoting the State Secretary’s speech in the meeting. The Afghan government and Taliban have been preparing for the intra-Afghan-negotiations, where both sides would discuss several dimensions in regard to the future system of government in Afghanistan. However the level of violence in the country is seemed unabated as the Taliban and government’s forces clashes often pose high number of casualties. In addition to that, the civilians have also been on top of the deaths and wounded due to the target killings and roadside mines, the government said conducted by the Taliban. The US-Taliban peace deal included American troops pull out and Taliban’a commitment to cut ties with other terrorist group such as al-Qaeda, Lashkar Taiba of Pakisan and others. The Taliban assured the US that Afghanistan would not be used against the Americans and their allies. But a United Nations’ report to the US congress said that the relations between the Taliban and al-Qaeda have still remained close despite signing a peace deal with the US. The US Department of State said in a statement that its special envoy for Afghanistan peace has kicked off traveling to Qatar, Pakistan and Tashkent to earn progression on intra-Afghan-negotiations, prisoners release and reduction in violence. Shaheen in a separate tweet said that Baradar has met the Iran special representative for Afghanistan, Mohammad Ibrahim Tahirian. 

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