Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said on Friday that The United States is preparing to sign a deal with the Taliban on February 29, building on an agreement on reducing violence across Afghanistan.
According to the details, A week-long “reduction in violence” between the Taliban, the US and Afghan security forces will commence shortly, Afghanistan’s National Security Council spokesman Javed Faisal told AFP on Friday.
The partial truce will mark a historic step in more than 18 years of gruelling conflict in Afghanistan and would pave the way for a deal that could, ultimately, see the war end.
According to the sources of AFP, Pompeo said that intra-Afghan negotiations would begin shortly after the February 29 signing, expected to take place in the Qatari capital Doha.
They will “build on this fundamental step to deliver a comprehensive and permanent ceasefire and the future political roadmap for Afghanistan,” he said.
The US top diplomat said that challenges remain, but that progress made so far “provides hope and represents a real opportunity. The United States calls on all Afghans to seize this moment”.
Earlier today he had a meeting with Saudi Prince and in a tweet he said, “Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman Al Saud and I discussed the ongoing threat posed by the Iranian regime. We also discussed the situations in Syria, Iraq, Lebanon and the need for a united GCC. We stand together with Saudi Arabia in addressing these regional security challenges.”
Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman Al Saud and I discussed the ongoing threat posed by the Iranian regime. We also discussed the situations in Syria, Iraq, Lebanon and the need for a united GCC. We stand together with Saudi Arabia in addressing these regional security challenges. pic.twitter.com/iTwQlW5Geh
— Secretary Pompeo (@SecPompeo) February 21, 2020