Troops Likely To Withdraw Much Before September: Officials

Kabul: As per a New York times report, the notification for the US troop withdrawal could be issued in the next few days, American officials said on Saturday.

As per the report, if the forces face threats from the Taliban, the troop withdrawal may end well before the deadline of September 11, said officials aware of the developments.
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US President Joe Biden on Wednesday announced that all US troops would be out of Afghanistan by September 11, the 20th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks on the United States. However, the Taliban released a statement saying that the extension of the deadline is a violation of the Doha agreement and that US will have to face consequences if the troops are not withdrawn by May 1.

The Taliban made clear that, with US troops leaving, they believed victory was in hand. They opposed any form of constitutional democracy or elections in favor of harsh Islamic rule.

There is growing concern that a hasty exit from Afghanistan could leave the country in disarray and that a civil war could take place. There is increase in violence as the Afghan government and the Taliban are involved in clashes and counter-clashes ahead of the Istanbul Summit. There are increasing concerns from human rights group about civilian casualties in the country.

A former top Pentagon official David Sadney was quoted as saying: “There is a humanitarian disaster coming. The Taliban are taking names, and they will start taking vengeance on women and young people, teachers and their families, who believed in US values. They will be killed and tortured because they bought into a vision the US supported and encouraged, ideas of democracy and free speech. I know Afghans who have and will die.”

The US, UN, Qatar are scheduled to meet to discuss the peace roadmap for Afghanistan in Istanbul from April 24 at the peace summit. Taliban, however, has refused to be a participant of any peace talks before troop withdrawal takes place.

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