KABUL | The taliban have renewed their commitment to respect the agreement signed at the end of February with the United States, which seeks the withdrawal of foreign troops from Afghanistan in exchange including starting a dialogue of peace interafghan, in a conversation with secretary of State Mike Pompeo.
The negotiator-in-chief of the insurgents, mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar, was discussed during a videoconference with Mr. Pompeo of the implementation of the agreement on the us-taliban Doha, including “the withdrawal of us forces from Afghanistan, the liberation of the prisoners, starting dialogue interafghan and the reduction of the violence”, said on Monday evening a spokesman for the taliban, Suhail Shaheen.
“We are committed to start the dialogue interafghan (…), but delays in the release of the prisoners have delayed the discussions,” said mullah Baradar, according to a gazouilli Suhail Shaheen.
The first peace negotiations, however, seem to be closer, the afghan president Ashraf Ghani has promised to complete the liberation of 5,000 prisoners the taliban against a thousand members of the afghan security forces held captive by the insurgents.
The authorities, who have already released almost 4,000 prisoners the taliban, plan to expand the thousand remaining, as stipulated in the Doha agreement, not ratified by Kabul.
The taliban, who have made this prisoner exchange as a condition preliminary to the peace dialogue, have repeated on several occasions their willingness to honor their promises made in Qatar.
In may, their leader Haibatullah Akhundzada had already, in a rare message written, underlined “the commitment” insurgents “in the agreement signed with America”, calling it “the other side to abide by its commitments”.
The discussion with Mike Pompeo comes as the president, Donald Trump, a supporter of a quick departure of american forces in Afghanistan, is under pressure in Washington for a quack connected to that country, the theatre of the longest conflict in the history of the United States.
The New York Times, followed by the Washington Post and the Wall Street Journal, reported on Friday that Russian agents had distributed money to the soldiers “close to the taliban” so they could kill american soldiers or NATO, of the information transmitted to Mr. Trump, who has not responded.
On Sunday, the us president has explained not to have been “briefed” on the subject, the intelligence services believing the information is not “credible”. But on Monday, the NYT revealed that he had received a written report as early as February.
The taliban have denied having received money for Russian to kill american soldiers.