Taliban chief warns US of violating Doha deal
MİDDLE EAST

Taliban chief warns US of violating Doha deal

In veiled reference to Istanbul peace conference, Hibatullah says Taliban must be taken into confidence for participation

News Service AA

Taliban leader Hibatullah Akhundzada on Sunday warned the US of violating the 2020 peace agreement with regards to troop withdrawal from Afghanistan.

In his Eid al-Fitr message, the group’s leader said Taliban considers the withdrawal of foreign forces as "a good step."

“Unfortunately, the American side has so far violated the signed agreement repeatedly and caused enormous human and material loss to civilians,” said Akhundzada, who has not been seen in public for years.

If the US failed to live up to its commitments, it should be held accountable for the consequences, he added.

The US administration under then-President Donald Trump signed in February 2020 a deal with the Taliban, agreeing to withdraw all its troops by May 1, 2021 in return of security guarantees.

While violence in war-torn Afghanistan has not subsided since then, US President Joe Biden has announced to complete the military exit by Sept. 11, the 20th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks.

Meanwhile, in a veiled reference to the now postponed Istanbul peace conference, he said Taliban must be taken into confidence in advance so that they assess the proposal and make a final decision.

A western diplomat in Kabul told Anadolu Agency that the Taliban are being convinced to attend the meet in Istanbul, which was delayed last month because of reluctance by the insurgents.

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