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Taliban says more Americans will lose lives after Trump announcement

Afghan security forces take position during a battle with the Taliban in Kunduz province.

Afghan security forces take position during a battle with the Taliban in Kunduz province.   | Photo Credit: REUTERS

Afghanistan government cautiously welcomes halt to secret U.S.-Taliban summit

The Taliban said the U.S. “will be harmed more than anyone” but left the door open for future negotiations on Sunday after President Donald Trump abruptly announced that he had called off year-long talks to end America’s longest war.

“We still... believe that the American side will come back to this position... Our fight for the past 18 years should have proven to the Americans that we will not be satisfied until we witness the complete end of the occupation,” the group said.

Mr. Trump had cited a Taliban attack in Kabul on Thursday, which killed 12 people, including a U.S. soldier, as his reason for calling off the talks, including a secret meeting with the insurgents at Camp David in Maryland planned for this weekend.

But the Taliban dismissed his reasoning in their statement, saying it showed “neither experience nor patience”, and accused the U.S. of killing “hundreds of Afghans” in the fighting.

“Americans will be harmed more than any other,” by Mr. Trump’s decision, the statement said, adding that the U.S.’s “credibility will be harmed, their anti-peace stance will become more visible to the world, their casualties and financial losses will increase, and the US role in international political interaction will be discredited even further.”

Afghan President Ashraf Ghani’s office cautiously saluted the “sincere efforts of its allies”..

“The Afghan government, in relation to the peace, appreciates the sincere efforts of its allies and is committed to working together with the U.S. and other allies to bring a lasting peace,” said a statement from President Ashraf Ghani’s office.

Meanwhile, many Afghans welcomes the U.S. position. “It was a good opportunity for (the Taliban) but it was wasted because they did not stop attacks,” 22-year-old Ahmad Jawed said.

Kabul resident Yama Safdari, 24, regretted that it took the death of one American to stop the process “while so many Afghan army forces and civilians are killed on a daily basis”.

Many Afghans welcomed the decision on social media.

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Printable version | Mar 30, 2020 7:11:57 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/international/as-talks-are-nixed-taliban-says-more-americans-will-lose-lives/article29370126.ece

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