US forces launch airstrike on Taliban days after agreement
Representatives &# 171; Taliban&# 187; called it a violation of agreements previously reached with Washington
On Friday, Pentagon officials in Afghanistan announced that the US military carried out a night air raid on the Taliban in order to protect the security forces of the official government of Afghanistan..
US Armed Forces spokesman Colonel Sonny Leggett tweeted that the airstrike in the southern province of Kandahar is in line with the US-Taliban agreement signed in February.. He said armed Taliban fighters came under fire as they attacked an Afghan checkpoint near Jari.
Leggett did not provide further details, but called the insurgents’ allegations of the deaths of civilians in the raid “false”.
The Taliban condemned the airstrike, calling it a violation of the pact with the United States, and claiming that the attack destroyed “several residential buildings” and killed up to 10 people.
Local media quoted officials in Kandahar as claiming that the Taliban carried out a “coordinated attack” on security forces when the US military launched an airstrike, killing at least 30 militants..
Taliban spokesman Qari Yusuf Ahmadi said there is no fighting in the area, adding that the agreement prohibits airstrikes on non-fighting zones.
“The continuation of such irresponsible actions could also provoke retaliation by the Mujahideen [Taliban fighters], the responsibility for which will fall directly on the shoulders of America,” Ahmadi said..
Meanwhile, the United States is currently reducing the number of troops in the country, and peace talks are underway in Qatar between the Taliban and representatives of the Afghan government..
There are 4,500 U.S. troops currently in Afghanistan, with President Donald Trump plans to reduce the number to 2,500 next month
US-Taliban agreement requires all US and coalition forces to leave the country by May 2021.
In return, the Taliban have pledged to fight terrorism on Afghan soil and negotiate a political peace deal with rival factions. Negotiations began on September 12.
However, ongoing hostilities, leading to an increase in civilian casualties, undermine prospects for an early end to intra-Afghan talks..
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