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When, why, what's next: Answering questions about US withdrawal from Afghanistan

Author : 112.ua News Agency

Source : 112 Ukraine

The process has already begun. It pleases many of people, but, on the contrary, frightens many in Afghanistan itself
22:56, 12 July 2021

Reuters

The United States stops the military operation in Afghanistan and withdraws its troops from the country, transferring control over the situation to the Afghan army.

The withdrawal began on May 1 and should be completed by September 11, the 20th anniversary of the attacks in New York and Washington. The military operation against the Taliban, which was launched on October 7, 2001, was precisely the response to the terrorist act in the United States, known throughout the world as 9/11.

Why did the US decide to withdraw its troops?

"It's time to end the longest war in our history, and it's time for American troops to return home," the BBC quoted US President Joe Biden's televised address.

According to him, the United States has achieved the fulfillment of all its tasks in Afghanistan.

At the same time, as clarifies Interfax, Biden warned the Taliban movement against attacks on the US military during the withdrawal of troops.

Also, the US President promised that the US will continue to support Afghanistan, as well as negotiations on a political settlement of the conflict.

An important thing. In the United States, they have set a deadline for the withdrawal of troops WITHOUT CONDITIONS. That is, the situation in the country, it seems, will not influence this decision.

Are there negotiations?

Yes, but there is no reason to talk about any success of these negotiations yet.

Here it is worth starting with the fact that the date for the start of the US withdrawal from Afghanistan was approved by the previous President of the States, Donald Trump. True, Biden slightly corrected this plan: he extended the process for another five months.

So that's it. In response to Trump's decision, the Taliban, according to DW, agreed to participate in direct peace talks with the Afghan government, which have been taking place since September 2020.

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In February 2021, an agreement was signed between the United States and the Taliban to begin the settlement of the armed conflict in Afghanistan. However, in fact, the Taliban fighters continued their armed attacks.

And later they also announced that they did not intend to continue negotiations until all foreign troops left the country.

Why do so many people fear the withdrawal of US troops from Afghanistan?

Because they are afraid that the Taliban will take advantage of this and again seize power in the country.

"The Taliban leadership has in no way demonstrated that it wants peace, but in every possible way it shows that it wants to come to power through war," Keith Clarke, director of the Afghanistan Analysts Network, was quoted as saying by the BBC.

She also clarifies that "where there is a conflict, freedoms evaporate; where the Taliban rule, the old authoritarianism reigns there."

"Who will be able to defend the gains of the past 20 years if the civil war intensifies and the Taliban begin to seize new territories?" she sums up.

Does Taliban give cause for concern?

Apparently, yes.

The Washinghton Post writes that the Taliban seized several areas in the north of the country over the weekend. As a result, more than a thousand Afghan soldiers fled across the border of the Badakhshan province to Tajikistan.

The media write that given the withdrawal of US and NATO troops from the country, the militant group, which they ousted from Kabul, began to strengthen its position in Afghanistan, especially through rural areas. According to some reports, the Taliban control about a third of the 421 districts and regional centers of the country.

Separately, it is worth highlighting the episode with the withdrawal of American troops from the Bagram airbase. The marauders immediately broke into the base and tried to plunder it.

Humanitarian organizations talk about a possible new refugee crisis, human rights activists - about the possible loss of women's rights and freedoms in areas controlled by the Taliban.

"Biden has been skeptical about the US mission in Afghanistan for a long time. The US President believes that the war against the Taliban is ineffective. However, the situation can easily get out of control," the newspaper concludes.

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