US, Taleban reach Afghan truce deal
munich — The United States has reached a reduction of violence agreement with the Taleban that could lead to a US troop withdrawal from Afghanistan, a senior administration official said on Friday.
The official told reporters at a security conference in Munich that the seven-day period of a reduction of violence has yet to begin. US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and Defence Secretary Mark Esper met with Afghan President Ashraf Ghani during the conference on Friday.
The announcement came a day after US President Donald Trump said there was a “good chance” of reaching an agreement with the Taleban on a reduction of US troops in Afghanistan.
The official, who was not authorised to publicly discuss the matter and spoke on the condition of anonymity, said the Taleban had committed to a halt in roadside and suicide bombings as well as rocket attacks. The official said the US would monitor the truce and determine if there were any violations. Should the Taleban comply,
BREAKTHROUGH: Mike Pompeo with Ashraf Ghani in Munich on Friday. —
the “reduction in violence” agreement would be followed by the signing of an agreement that would initiate peace negotiations that include all Afghan sides.
A Taleban official familiar with the deal said that the second agreement would be signed on February 29 and that the interAfghan dialogue would begin on March 10. The officials said Germany and Norway have offered to host the talks. —