Pompeo Says Matter of Afghan Peace and Negotiation “Incredibly Complicated”

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo while responding to a question from farmers after his address at the “Future Farmers of America” event in Iowa, described the ongoing nature of US-Taliban talks in Doha as “incredibly complicated”.

Pompeo said that he hopes there is sufficient progress in the deliberations for him to travel in the next couple of weeks to move it further.

The United States was trying to “find pockets” where there was “sufficient agreement” that everyone could begin to move forward, Pompeo expressed as he highlighted the role of special envoy Zalmay Khalilzad.

“I have a team on the ground right now trying to negotiate with the Taliban terrorists in Afghanistan, trying to find a way to achieve an Afghanistan that’s not at war, that’s not engaged in violence, that doesn’t present a threat to the United States of America, that will respect the fundamental basic rights for every Afghan citizen — women, children — across the full spectrum,” he said.

He said that it is a complicated problem and if one adds the regional players like Afghanistan, Pakistan, India, China, Russia, it becomes an incredibly complicated negotiation.

Pompeo also added that the Afghan agreement would be “based on fundamental understandings about different interests and incentives” that the parties had so that this agreement would hold and stay.

“In this case, if we could do this, if we could pull off a resolution in Afghanistan, boy, the good that we could do for the world. I hope Ambassador Khalilzad makes progress,” he said.

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