After more than a year of grueling talks between US officials and Taliban, both are seeking an end to a long war by having a full peace accord. The Taliban for a long time has been demanding the complete withdrawal of US troops from Afghanistan but the officials say that any reduction in troops will depend on the militants sticking to their commitments made in the deal.
After unveiling the details of the agreement that included commitments from both the parties, the US hopes that this will lead to a full peace accord.
Unveiling the Deal
Approximately 12,000 to 13,000 US Military troops are currently present in Afghanistan who will be monitoring the reduction in violence to ensure that the Taliban upholds its commitments. A US official said, “We will be monitoring the situation and if the Taliban deliver on their commitments we have commitments, in terms of reduction of forces that are also specific.” Taliban will have to explicitly commit that it will ensure the removal of Al-Qaeda from Afghanistan and that it will fight the terrorist group Islamic State (IS). For this, the US and Afghanistan will sign an annex that will allow US to monitor territorial breaches and to share information on counterterrorism.
On the sidelines of the Munich conference, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has briefed Afghan President Ashraf Ghani on the deal with the Taliban. If the partial peace prevails then it is hoped that it could lead to the next stage of negotiations between the Taliban and the Kabul government. Also, India’s External Affairs Minister Dr. S Jaishankar met the US special envoy on Afghan reconciliation and the Saudi foreign minister to discuss regional and global issues.
These meetings of the EAM with delegates of the US and Afghanistan come at a crucial time when there is a deal in process between the US and the Taliban to reduce violence and withdrawal of American troops from war-torn Afghanistan. Dr. S.Jaishankar also met Defence Ministers of Australia and Singapore, Linda Reynolds and Ng Eng Hen respectively to discuss increased cooperation for working in the areas of security.
He also held meetings with the members of the Bundestag Foreign Affairs Committee to strengthen ties between Indian and the European Union.
On February 15, Dr. S.Jaishankar met US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo to discuss the bilateral relationship ahead of US President Donald Trump’s visit to India on February 24 and 25. The Munich Security Conference which is the world’s leading forum for debate on international security policy was held from February 14-16, 2020.