Taliban, US blame each other for violating Doha deal after drone strike killed al-Qaeda leader al-Zawahiri

Posted by News Express | 3 August 2022 | 187 times

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The interim Taliban administration on Tuesday condemned the drone attack carried out by the US in Afghanistan on Sunday.

“It is a clear violation of international principles and the Doha agreement,” said Zabihullah Mujahid, spokesperson for the interim government, in a statement.

The US drone strike killed al-Qaeda leader Ayman al-Zawahiri in the capital Kabul in what US President Joe Biden said was a "clear demonstration" of American resolve to carry out its fight against the terrorist group.

However, Mujahid said: “Such actions are a repetition of the failed experiences of the past 20 years and are against the interests of the USA, Afghanistan, and the region.”

The US strike took place early Sunday morning local time and targeted a safe house in the Shirpur area of Kabul that Zawahiri, his wife, daughter, and grandchildren had relocated to earlier this year, according to a senior Biden administration official who briefed reporters on condition of anonymity.

This is the first precision drone strike officially acknowledged by the US in the war-torn country since all the foreign forces withdrew from the country last August under the Doha agreement signed between Washington and the Taliban.

The agreement requires the non-use of Afghan territory against any other country while respecting the territorial integrity and sovereignty of Afghanistan.

Mujahid confirmed the attack took place but “at first, the nature of the incident was not known.”

“The intelligence agencies of the Islamic Emirate investigated the incident and found in their preliminary investigations that the attack was carried out by American drones,” he added.

The Taliban identify themselves as the Islamic Emirates of Afghanistan.

The Taliban spokesperson said the repetition of drone strikes “will damage existing opportunities” as it has been insisting that Afghanistan will not be used for any kind of action against any other nation.

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken said in a statement that by “hosting and sheltering” al-Qaeda leader al-Zawahiri in Kabul, the “Taliban grossly violated the Doha agreement and repeated assurances to the world that they would not allow Afghan territory to be used by terrorists to threaten the security of other countries.”

“They also betrayed the Afghan people and their own stated desire for recognition from and normalization with the international community,” he added.​​​​​​​ (Anadolu Agency)

Source: News Express

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