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World


US to ink deal with Taliban on Feb 29: Pompeo

US to ink deal with Taliban on Feb 29: Pompeo
(file photo)

Washington, Feb 21 (UNI) The United States has reached an “understanding” with the Taliban and the two sides would sign a peace deal on February 29, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said on Friday.

"After decades of conflict, we have come to an understanding with the Taliban on a significant reduction in violence across Afghanistan. This is an important step on a long road to peace, and I call on all Afghans to seize this opportunity," Pompeo said in a tweet.

In a more substantial statement, released by State Department spokesperson Morgan Ortagus, Pompeo said the talks between the two parties were intended to “facilitate a political settlement to end the war in Afghanistan, reduce United States and Allied Forces presence, and ensure that no terrorist group ever uses Afghan soil to threaten the United States or our allies.”

"Challenges remain, but the progress made in Doha provides hope and a real opportunity," he said.

Afghan officials too confirmed that the peace deal with the militant group.

Inter-Afghan negotiations will starts soon after the agreement is signed, Pompeo said.

Negotiations for the peace deal resumed after four months in January this year that gad been stuck over the disagreement on the definition of "reduction in violence".

US President Donald Trump has constantly promised to end America's wars and bring back its over 10,000 troops home from the war-torn country.

The US and NATO forces launched a war against terror in Afghanistan 18 years ago after the global Islamist terror group Al Qaeda sheltered and supported by Taliban attacked the US on September 11, 2001.

UNI RHK SRJ

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