By KATHY GANNON and ELLEN KNICKMEYER, Related Press
ISLAMABAD (AP) — Senior Taliban officers and U.S. representatives are to carry talks Saturday and Sunday about containing extremist teams in Afghanistan and easing the evacuation of international residents and Afghans from the nation, officers from either side mentioned.
It is the primary such assembly since U.S. forces withdrew from Afghanistan in late August, ending a 20-year army presence there, and the Taliban’s rise to energy within the nation. The talks are to happen in Doha, the capital of the Persian Gulf state of Qatar.
Taliban spokesman Suhail Shaheen, who is predicated in Doha, instructed The Related Press on Saturday that the talks may even revisit the peace settlement the Taliban signed with Washington in 2020. The settlement had paved the way in which for the ultimate U..S. withdrawal.
“Sure there’s a assembly . . . about bilateral relations and implementation of the Doha settlement,” mentioned Shaheen. “It covers varied matters.”
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Terrorism may even function within the talks, mentioned a second official who spoke on situation of anonymity as a result of he was not approved to talk to the media.
For the reason that Taliban took energy, Islamic State extremists have ramped up assaults on the militant group, in addition to ethnic and spiritual minorities. On Friday, an IS suicide bomber killed not less than 46 minority Shiite Muslims and wounded dozens within the deadliest assault because the U.S. departure.
IS has carried out relentless assaults on the nation’s Shiite Muslims since rising in jap Afghanistan in 2014. IS can be seen as the best risk to america.
The U.S.-Taliban settlement of 2020, which was negotiated by the Trump administration, demanded the Taliban break ties with terrorist teams and assure Afghanistan wouldn’t once more harbor terrorists who might assault america and its allies.
It appears sure the 2 sides will focus on within the weekend talks how you can deal with the rising risk. The Taliban have mentioned they are not looking for U.S. anti-terrorism help and have warned Washington in opposition to any so-called “over-the -horizon” strikes on Afghan territory from exterior the nation’s borders.
The USA, in the meantime, would search to carry Taliban leaders to commitments that they might permit People and different international nationals to depart Afghanistan, together with Afghans who as soon as labored for the U.S. army or authorities and different Afghan allies, a U.S. official mentioned.
The official spoke on situation of anonymity as a result of the individual was not approved to talk by title concerning the conferences.
The Biden administration has fielded questions and complaints concerning the gradual tempo of U.S.-facilitated evacuations from Taliban-ruled Afghanistan because the U.S. withdrawal.
State Division spokesman Ned Worth mentioned Thursday that 105 U.S. residents and 95 inexperienced card holders had left since then on flights facilitated by the U.S. That quantity had not modified for greater than every week.
U.S. veterans and different people have helped others go away the nation on constitution flights, and a few People and others have gotten out throughout land borders.
A whole lot of different international nationals and Afghans have additionally left on latest flights.
Dozens of Americans are nonetheless looking for to get out, in accordance with the State Division, together with hundreds of green-card holders and Afghans and members of the family believed eligible for U.S. visas. U.S. officers have cited the issue of verifying flight manifests with none American officers on the bottom in Afghanistan to assist, together with different hold-ups.
People additionally intend to press the Taliban to watch the rights of ladies and women, lots of whom the Taliban are reportedly blocking from returning to jobs and school rooms, and of Afghans at giant, and to type an inclusive authorities, the official mentioned.
U.S. officers may even encourage Taliban officers to provide humanitarian businesses free entry to areas in want amid the financial upheaval following the U.S. departure and Taliban takeover.
The official confused the session didn’t indicate the U.S. was recognizing the Taliban as respectable governors of the nation.
Knickmeyer reported from Washington.
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