Taliban terrorists to wreak carnage across Afghanistan in new spring offensive
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Affected Countries: afghanistan;
The Taliban could wreak carnage across Afghanistan in a new “spring offensive” when troops pull out, the US Secretary of State has warned.
In a letter to Afghan President Ashraf Ghani, Anthony Blinken proposed a 90-day Reduction-in-Violence that could prevent retaliation from the Islamic fundamentalist group.
In the letter, obtained by the BBC on Sunday, the US Secretary of State called for a new international peace effort to be overseen by the UN in a bid to help reach a “permanent and comprehensive ceasefire”.
The intervention will be urgently needed, Mr Blinken said, to prevent the security situation from deteriorating.
Turkey will also be asked to host a senior-level meeting with both sides to “finalise the peace agreement”.
Under a deal between the Taliban and the Trump administration, all remaining US forces are due to leave Afghanistan by the end of April.
US troops invaded Afghanistan in 2001 to remove the Taliban from power in response to the 9/11 terrorist attacks.
At the height of the deployment in 2011, the US had around 110,000 troops and it was costing $100bn a year.
In January, the Biden administration said it would review the peace agreement made with the Taliban under Donald Trump.
In that deal, the remaining 9,600 US-led Nato troops would pull out by May 1 in exchange for Taliban security guarantees.
Critics say pulling out would hand the Taliban a victory after the terror group went back on promises to stop attacks and cut ties with al-Qaeda.
Meanwhile, European diplomats have claimed that Nato’s two-decade war against the Taliban is “unwinnable”.
One European diplomat said ahead of Nato talks in February: “This war is not winnable, but Nato cannot allow itself to lose it pitifully.”
And Germany’s defence minister Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer said: “We can already say that we are not yet in a position to talk about the withdrawal of international forces from Afghanistan.”
She added: “This also means a changed security situation, an increased threat for the international forces, also for our own forces. We have to prepare for this, and we will certainly discuss this.”
Nato countries are desperate not to see Afghanistan slide back into chaos after the enormous cost in lives and money since operations began in the wake of the September 11 attacks.
Source: The Scottish Sun