Chief Afghan peace envoy says US troops pulling out too quickly

ANKARA: Afghanistan’s chief peace envoy Abdullah Abdullah stated on Saturday that the US choice to start withdrawing troops from Afghanistan has come too quickly, as his nation continues to be struggling to realize peace and safety amid an ongoing battle.
In an interview with The Associated Press, Abdullah additionally described as “stunning” an Australian navy report that discovered proof that elite Australian troops unlawfully killed 39 Afghan prisoners.
He welcomed a choice by Australian authorities to pursue the perpetrators.
Abdullah spoke in Ankara the place he sought Turkey’s help for negotiations between the Afghan authorities and the Taliban which are going down in Qatar to search out an finish to many years of conflict. The talks have made little progress up to now.
“This is the choice of the US administration and we respect it,” Abdullah stated of the US choice this week to cut back troops ranges in Afghanistan from greater than 4,500 to 2,500.
“Our desire would have been that with the situations bettering, this could have taken place.”
Acting US defence secretary Christopher Miller introduced that Washington would scale back troop ranges in Iraq and Afghanistan by mid-January, consistent with President Donald Trump’s pledge to carry US forces house.
Afghan officers have expressed issues {that a} fast discount in American troops may strengthen the negotiating hand of the Taliban, whereas the militants are nonetheless waging a full-fledged insurgency towards authorities forces.
“It’s not like issues will go as we want,” Abdullah stated, including nonetheless, that he welcomed the very fact 2,500 troops will stay and that Nato will even retain its presence.
The chief negotiator stated he was assured that the United States will proceed to help peace talks between the Afghan authorities and the Taliban throughout President-elect Joe Biden‘s administration.
“What type or what form it can take that continues to be to be seen however they are going to definitely push for a peaceable settlement,” Abdullah stated.
Abdullah, who shared energy in Afghanistan’s final authorities as chief govt and earlier than that as overseas minister, cautioned that “a complete settlement will come on account of the negotiation between the Afghan authorities and the Taliban,” no matter any potential new enter by the brand new US administration.
Washington signed a cope with the Taliban in February to pave the best way for the Doha talks and American forces’ eventual withdrawal. The Americans championed the deal as Afghanistan’s finest likelihood at an enduring peace.
Abdullah’s conferences with President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and different Turkish officers got here days after Australia revealed a report into conflict crimes that discovered proof that elite Australian troops unlawfully killed 39 Afghan prisoners, farmers and civilians.
“It was stunning,” Abdullah stated of the report, however welcomed the truth that Australia had “come clear about it.” He added, “there’s the promise, the prospect of prosecution for individuals who have dedicated these heinous crimes that can depend. This will assist stopping most of these crimes.”
The high Afghan official additionally stated he had requested Turkey to “reenergize” its efforts in help of the peace course of, and steered that Turkey appoint a “particular envoy” to help the negotiations.

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