Donald Trump’s secretary of state says Afghanistan talks are dead ‘for now’ Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said Sunday that peace talks in Afghanistan are dead “for now” and defended A Taliban official, meanwhile,
Warned that Trump’s decision to halt negotiations would lead to more American deaths as the extremist Islamic group continues to fight for more territory.
Pompeo said the Taliban’s attack last week – in which a car bomb killed one American serviceman and 11 others prompted Trump’s decision to pull the plug on months of painstaking negotiations that, until Saturday, seemed on track to produce a peace deal.
“The Taliban tried to gain negotiating advantage by conducting terror attacks inside of the country,” Pompeo said on CNN’s “State of the Union,” one in a string of television interviews he did Sunday.
Trump might be willing to resume negotiations, Pompeo said, if Taliban leaders start to deliver on their promises, which include reducing violence in Afghanistan and ending their relationship with al-Qaida terrorists.
In talks with Trump’s top negotiator, the Taliban have promised not to allow Afghanistan to become a safe haven for al-Qaida or other extremist groups, such as the Islamic State.
Camp David is where America’s leaders met to plan our response after al Qaeda, supported by the Taliban, killed 3000 Americans on 9/11,” Rep. Liz Cheney, R-Wyo., tweeted on Sunday. No member of the Taliban should set foot there. Ever. The Taliban still harbors al Qaeda.”
The secretary of state said the negotiations, led by U.S. special representative Zalmay Khalilzad, had made “real progress.” Khalilzad announced a framework agreement with the Taliban last Monday.
Under that deal, the U.S. would withdraw more than 5,400 of its 14,000 troops in Afghanistan over the next five months if the Taliban reduced its attacks and met other conditions.