The Taliban published an open letter to the American public on Tuesday that urged the US to live up to its end of the US-Taliban peace deal that was signed in Doha last year. The agreement paved the way for the US and other foreign forces to leave Afghanistan by May 1st.
“Now that a year has passed since the signing of the Doha agreement, we urge the American side to remain committed to the full implementation of this accord,” the letter reads.
The letter, which was signed by Taliban deputy leader Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar, said the conflict could be settled through talks with the US-backed Kabul government. “We are fully confident that the Afghans themselves can achieve the establishment of an Islamic government and enduring peace and security through intra-Afghan dialogue,” the letter says.
The Taliban letter was published the day before a NATO ministerial meeting. On Wednesday and Thursday, defense ministers from NATO-member states are meeting to discuss several issues, including Afghanistan.
The Biden administration is currently reviewing the US-Taliban deal. While there has been no official announcement, all signs point to the US and NATO staying in Afghanistan beyond May 1st, which means the Taliban will likely start attacking the US again.
Since the deal was signed, the Taliban ceased attacks on US and coalition forces. February 8th marked the first full year that no US troops died in combat in Afghanistan since the war started in 2001. The Taliban could be planning a major offensive if the US decides to stay, something the Pentagon is reportedly preparing for.