US, Pakistan Military Officials Meet Over Troop Withdrawal from Afghanistan
Afghan Voice Agency(AVA)_Senior US and Pakistani military officials spoke in Islamabad on Friday about the possibility of postponing the withdrawal of foreign forces from Afghanistan, a move currently under review by US President Joe Biden’s administration.
General Kenneth McKenzie, head of the US Army Central Command (CENTCOM), thanked Pakistan for its “contributions to the Afghan peace negotiations” and pledged to explore “new areas for collaboration.”
“Certainly has launched some attacks. It pales against what the Taliban is doing,” said, denouncing violence against Afghan forces, and “targeted assassinations in some of the urban areas.”
“This is clearly the Taliban,” he said. “There is no way it’s anyone else. That’s very clear.”
Pakistan’s military chief Javed Bajwa meanwhile reaffirmed his country’s commitment to peace efforts, noting that peace in Afghanistan was important for peace in Pakistan, according to a statement.
McKenzie has indicated that conditions have not been met for a withdrawal, which he says could create a resurgence in the country, risking a collapse of the Afghan government.
The meeting comes with the US expected to announce in the coming days whether it will stick with a plan to withdraw its military from the country at the beginning of May, as agreed under a US-Taliban accord reached in February 2020 in Doha.