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Joe Biden, Ashraf Ghani question Taliban’s commitment to talks

U.S. President Joe Biden, Afghan President Ashraf Ghani. File   | Photo Credit: AP

U.S President Joe Biden and Afghan President Ashraf Ghani have, during a Friday phone call, concluded that the Taliban’s brutal campaign in Afghanistan after the departure of most U.S. and NATO troops, is not consistent with the group’s claimed support for a negotiated peace settlement in Afghanistan.

“President Biden and President Ghani agreed that the Taliban’s current offensive is in direct contradiction to the movement’s claim to support a negotiated settlement of the conflict. President Biden also reaffirmed the United States’ commitment to continue supporting the Afghan security forces to defend themselves,” a White House readout of the leaders’ phone call said.

The two leaders “deplored” the loss of innocent lives via targeted killings and the displacement of civilians and the damage to infrastructure and buildings.

According to the White House, Mr. Biden reaffirmed continued U.S. support and aid for the country, including for Afghan women, girls and minorities – whose status is extremely precarious given the Taliban’s history of repression of these groups.

“President Biden urged continued work for unity among Afghan leaders on behalf of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan and the values on which it is based. The two leaders discussed the importance of Afghans coming together to support their common interest in security and peace, and President Biden underscored continued U.S. diplomatic engagement in support of a durable and just political settlement,” the readout said.

Earlier in July, Mr. Biden had said that it was “highly unlikely” that there was going to be one unified government controlling the whole of Afghanistan.


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Printable version | Sep 23, 2021 12:41:14 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/international/joe-biden-ashraf-ghani-question-talibans-commitment-to-talks/article35505017.ece

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