Statement by Secretary Pompeo: Next Steps Toward a U.S. Agreement with the Taliban

U.S. Department of State
Office of The Spokesperson
For Immediate Release
Statement by Secretary Michael R. Pompeo
February 21, 2020

The United States and the Taliban have been engaged in extensive talks to facilitate a political settlement to end the war in Afghanistan, reduce United States and Allied Forces presence, and ensure that no terrorist group ever uses Afghan soil to threaten the United States or our allies.

In recent weeks, in consultation with the Government of National Unity, U.S. negotiators in Doha have come to an understanding with the Taliban on a significant and nationwide reduction in violence across Afghanistan. Upon a successful implementation of this understanding, signing of the U.S.-Taliban agreement is expected to move forward. We are preparing for the signing to take place on February 29. Intra-Afghan negotiations will start soon thereafter, and will build on this fundamental step to deliver a comprehensive and permanent ceasefire and the future political roadmap for Afghanistan. The only way to achieve a sustainable peace in Afghanistan is for Afghans to come together and agree on the way forward.

Challenges remain, but the progress made in Doha provides hope and represents a real opportunity. The United States calls on all Afghans to seize this moment.

The United States thanks the State of Qatar and all other allies and partners for their support of peace in Afghanistan.