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Stoltenberg says NATO support Khalilzad’s peace quest

AT News Report

KABUL: The NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said that the United States and its allies do not seek a face-saving withdrawal deal by entering into negotiations with the Taliban.

Speaking at the Aspen Security Forum, Secretary General Stoltenberg, said NATO was fairly involved in peace efforts now. “We consult with the Ambassador Khalilzad frequently. I speak with him, he has been in the NATO’s North Atlantic Council many times.”

Stoltenberg further added “We have our NATO representative in Kabul, so we are closely linked up with the negotiations. Regardless, the peace process is led by US envoy but all the NATO Allies are involved.”

He stressed “Because we went into Afghanistan together, we are going to make decisions on our future posture together, and when the time is right, we’ll also leave together.”

Furthermore, Stoltenberg said NATO strongly support the efforts by Ambassador Khalilzad to reach an agreement with the Taliban.

“Of course, we hope that Khalilzad will succeed. This is not a leave deal we are seeking, but a peace deal, meaning that it has to secure that Afghanistan doesn’t once again become a safe haven for international terrorists,” added the NATO Secretary General.

Meanwhile, the NATO Senior Civilian Representative to Afghanistan Nicholas Kay has also said that their priority was to help Afghans achieve peace as soon as possible, adding that they are not in a rush to leave Afghanistan.

Taking to a conference “Afghanistan Before, During, and After Peace, here in Kabul, Kay said that NATO mission is to ensure the Afghan territory is never again turned into safe haven for international terrorists.

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