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Ex-NATO envoy warns against ‘hasty’ pullout before Taliban commitment to peace

AT News

KBUL: A NATO official opposes any foreign troop drawdown as “hastily” before Taliban’s commitment peace.

“This will be hurriedly to pull out of Afghanistan before a comprehensive peace agreement,” Sir Nicholas Kay, NATO’s former senior civilian representative to Afghanistan said on Sunday.

The Taliban signed a peace deal with the United States late February that allows Washington to pull its troops out of Afghanistan.

In return, Taliban are set to cut any relations with international terrorist organizations such as al-Qaeda.

“NATO’s only obligation at the first step is to reduce the number of soldiers to 12,000.”

Kay said the deal was conditional, warning that there would “no deal” if Taliban did not remain committed.

He called reduction in violence as one of Taliban commitments that the group had not fulfilled it.

“Taliban have stopped attacks on the coalition troops. They have stopped attacks in the big cities. But they still kill Afghan forces and civilians in the remote areas.”

Kay stressed that the intra-Afghan talks would be the next peace step.

Taliban have demanded the release of their 5,000 fighters kept in the government custody as a precondition to the intra-Afghan negotiations. The government has so far released 2,000 of them.

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