Peace agreement between the USA and Taliban until the end of February
Feb. 17, 2020
Kabul / Islamabad The militant Islamist Taliban are confident of signing an agreement with the United States by the end of the month. A phase of violence reduction agreed upon by Washington has not yet begun. Many security forces are dying again.
The militant Islamist Taliban are optimistic that they will soon sign an agreement with the United States on ways to peace.
According to Schahin, the US-Taliban agreement includes all international troops leaving Afghanistan. The Taliban would ensure that no other country was attacked from Afghanistan.
In addition, 5,000 Taliban prisoners are expected to be released after the agreement is signed. Afterwards, intra-Afghan negotiations should begin, said Shahin. These are the real peace talks for the country, which are about redistributing political power.
Since July 2018, representatives of the United States and the Taliban have been talking about a political solution to the more than 18-year war. Secretary of Defense Mark Esper said in Brussels on Thursday that the US and Taliban had negotiated a “proposal” for a seven-day reduction in violence.
A noticeable reduction in violence had recently been a demand from Washington to sign the Taliban agreement. The reduction is seen as a test that the Taliban can control their ranks. If this test is successful, the agreement should be signed. According to Esper, seven days were enough from the US perspective to assess how serious the Taliban was.
On Monday, Shahin did not provide any information about when the phase of reducing violence should begin. There is also no information on this from the USA. According to observers, it will still take some time before the planned violence reduction is fully prepared and all details have been passed on to all Taliban field commanders.
Kabul’s Afghanistan Analysts Network think tank said the U.S. would cut or stop its military operations against the Taliban over the same period. So far there are no statements as to whether the Afghan security forces – the government in Kabul was not involved in the US-Taliban negotiations – will also shut down or stop their offensive operations. This should also be prepared.
Battles in the country continued on Monday. At least 13 soldiers were killed in a Taliban attack in the northern provincial capital Kundu, according to provincial councilors. Four were killed directly in the attack on the post, another nine as part of a requested reinforcement that was ambushed on the way.
The Afghan Ministry of Defense announced on Monday that there were 20 offensive operations and 10 air strikes in 15 provinces within 24 hours. More than 20 Taliban fighters were killed. The information provided by the ministry cannot be verified independently.
On Monday, Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan rejected Afghanistan’s longstanding accusation of hosting militants in the country. Pakistan did everything possible to support the peace process in Afghanistan, Khan said at a UN conference in Islamambad on the occasion of 40 years of Afghan refugees in Pakistan.
“There is no safe haven in Pakistan,” Khan said in response to comments by Afghanistan’s second vice president, Sarwar Danish, that Pakistan allows the Taliban to recruit fighters from Afghan refugee camps in Pakistan and also use the camps as a training camp.
Pakistan is considered to play a key role in the Afghan peace process. The country is said to have great influence on the Afghan Taliban and to support it through its own secret services. Islamabad always rejected the allegations.
Khan said around 2.7 million Afghan refugees lived in Pakistan. It could not be guaranteed that militants were not among them. His government did something about it, among other things, with the start of the construction of a border fence.
UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres, who also attended the conference, said he was very “encouraged” by Pakistan’s strong commitment to peace in Afghanistan. It was time for the Afghans to have peace. “No Afghan will be forgiven if this opportunity is not used,” he said.
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