Taliban: Deal Would Have Foreign Troops Out of Afghanistan Within 18 Months

US negotiator says a number of issues left to work out

In a rare look inside the negotiations between the US and the Taliban, Taliban officials have reported that the draft of a deal has been reached which would end the Afghan War, and see all foreign troops withdrawn from Afghanistan within 18 months.

Taliban officials further said this deal would involve a ceasefire at some point, leading to open talks with the Afghan government. This would be a major change as the Taliban have long refused to talk to the Afghan government, saying they had no real power.

US negotiator Zalmay Khalilzad downplayed the reports of the deal, saying nothing would be agreed to until everything is finalized. He did, however, confirm that significant progress had been made.

Khalilzad did not offer a lot of specific details on the matter, but did confirm that there were a “number of issues left to work out.” Talks are expected to pick up again in early February in Doha.

Other reports have suggested that the Taliban agreed to keep all ISIS and al-Qaeda forces out of Afghanistan in return for the US troops leaving. US troops have been in Afghanistan since 2001, the longest war in American history.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is Senior Editor for Antiwar.com. He has 20 years of experience in foreign policy research and his work has appeared in The American Conservative, Responsible Statecraft, Forbes, Toronto Star, Minneapolis Star-Tribune, Providence Journal, Washington Times, and the Detroit Free Press.