KABUL: The United States has conducted an air strike against Afghan Taliban, first of its kind after Feb 29 Doha Peace agreement.
A spokesman for US forces said “The US conducted an airstrike on March 4 against Taliban fighters in Nahr-e Saraj, Helmand, who were actively attacking an ANDSF checkpoint. This was a defensive strike to disrupt the attack. This was our 1st strike against the Taliban in 11 days.”
His statement came hours after President Trump held telephonic conversation with Afghan Taliban leader for some 35 minutes, first of its kind in US history, and after reports that the Taliban had attacked several posts in Kunduz killing at least 16 government troops.
Calling the Afghan forces as partners, the spokesman further said that “Taliban leadership promised the int’l community they would reduce violence and not increase attacks. We call on the Taliban to stop needless attacks and uphold their commitments. As we have demonstrated, we will defend our partners when required.”
He said ” “to be clear- we are committed to peace, however we have the responsibility to defend our ANDSF partners, Afghans and US have complied with our agreements; however, Talibans appear intent on squandering this opportunity and ignoring the will of the people for peace.”