Concerns Over the Al-Qaida Revival; Foreign Troop Will Leave Afghanistan with Delay

During their visit to Washington, President Mohammad Ashraf Ghani and Abdullah Abdullah met with Charles Schumer and Mitch McConnell, leaders of the Democratic and Republican parties.

Following the meeting, Senator Mitch McConnell issued a statement expressing hope that President Joe Biden’s administration would delay the withdrawal of US troops from Afghanistan and address the concerns raised. According to him, the threat of terrorism has not yet been contained

President Ghani and Abdullah Abdullah headed a high-level delegation to the United States on Wednesday night.

On the first day of his visit, the President met with a number of US officials to further strengthen diplomatic relations, finance, equip and support the security and defense forces, continue US cooperation with Afghanistan’s economic and development sectors, and the joint fight against terrorism.  The president and his entourage also met with US President Joe Biden on the second day of the visit.

Referring to the US Secretary of Defense’s remarks about Al-Qaida, Senator McConnell said that Al-Qaida is preparing to revive itself. US Secretary of Defense Lloyd Stan has previously said that the terrorist group may be active in Afghanistan for another two years.

Mr. McCauley warns that if there is no change in US policy, it could happen sooner than two years.

The Afghan foreign minister also expressed concern about the link between the Taliban and Al-Qaida saying that the Doha Agreement had not been implemented but the Taliban have dismissed the allegations as baseless. Foreign Minister Mohammad Hanif Atmar has also called on the United Nations to implement the Doha Agreement with the Taliban.

Under the Doha Agreement, the Taliban were to reduce violence in Afghanistan and cut ties with Al-Qaida.

The Taliban and the United States accuse each other of violating the Doha Agreement.

According to the Agreement, all foreign troops from Afghanistan were to leave the country on May 1 this year, but the Biden administration announced that US troops would leave Afghanistan by September 11th.

NATO forces have also announced that they will leave Afghanistan at the same time as US troops. About 50% of US troops have left Afghanistan so far, according to the US Central Command.

The United States to keep 650 troops in Afghanistan after completing the withdrawal process

However, the Associated Press reported, citing US officials, that 650 US troops would remain in Afghanistan to ensure the safety of US diplomats after the withdrawal of international troops.

The Associated Press stated in a report released on Friday, June 25, that the troops would secure US embassies and diplomats in Kabul.

According to the Associated Press, US officials have said that hundreds of troops are expected to temporarily work with Turkish forces to secure Kabul Airport by September.

Sources who spoke to the Associated Press about the continued presence of US forces in Afghanistan declined to be named.

According to US officials, under an agreement between the United States and Turkey, the country is set to install a missile defense system at Kabul Airport and deploy troops to launch the system there.

The Associated Press reports that US and Turkish officials are set to finalize a cooperation agreement to secure Kabul Airport in the Turkish capital, Ankara, next week. According to the Associated Press, the United States intends to allocate several aircraft to support Kabul Airport.

President Ghani and the chairperson of the High Council for National Reconciliation have traveled to Washington as the fate of war and peace in Afghanistan remains unclear. Meanwhile, the war in Afghanistan has escalated to an unprecedented level.

Conflict is currently raging in most of Afghanistan’s provinces

Over the past three weeks, several districts in Faryab, Sar-e-Pul, Jawzjan, Balkh and Takhar provinces have seen fighting between by security forces and the Taliban.

A few days ago, the US government announced that US President Joe Biden was scheduled to meet with President Mohammad Ashraf Ghani and Abdullah Abdullah at the White House on June 25.

According to a White House statement, the meeting highlights the enduring partnership between Afghanistan and the United States as the withdrawal of foreign troops from Afghanistan continues.

“The United States is committed to providing diplomatic, economic, and humanitarian assistance to the people of Afghanistan, including women, girls, and minorities,” the White House said in a statement.