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Wednesday 28 August 2019

US-Taliban Negotiations

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BERLIN (DW News) — The United States and Taliban are coming together for the ninth time to try to hammer out a deal and end 18 years of fighting in Afghanistan. They are doing this without the participation of the actual Afghan government.

The four major issues being looked at are the withdrawal of foreign (mostly American) troops, a ceasefire, counter-terror guarantees, and the promise by the Taliban to engage in intra-Afghan talks.

Today, Washington’s priority is no longer to defeat the Taliban, but to negotiate an end to America’s longest war.

The Taliban emerged in Afghanistan in the early 1990s with the aim of turning the country into a theocracy. In 2001, the group became the centre of international attention following the September 11th attacks. At the height of the Afghanistan mission in 2010, close to 140,000 US and NATO troops were on the ground battling the Taliban. The insurgency continued, and four years later, most foreign troops have pulled out, leaving just 20,000 mainly US soldiers behind to train Afghan forces and for counter-terrorism purposes. Since then, the Taliban have taken back large parts of Afghanistan.

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