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Historic: U.S. and Taliban signed a peace agreement in Doha

KABUL, DOHA, (BM) – On Saturday, the United States and the Taliban signed a peace agreement in Doha, which provides for the withdrawal of US troops and coalitions from Afghanistan in 14 months in exchange for the Taliban’s refusal to use the country’s territory to attack the United States and its allies.

Read more: US helicopter was shot down by Taliban

“The United States, its allies, and the Coalition will complete the withdrawal of remaining forces from Afghanistan within 14 months after the announcement of this joint declaration and the conclusion of an agreement between the United States and the Taliban,” the US State Department said in a statement.

The statement also notes that the United States will withdraw its forces from the remaining bases and reduce the number of troops in Afghanistan to 8600 within 135 days after an agreement with the Taliban.

The U.S. and the Taliban have been negotiating for several months in 2019. The US representative for Afghanistan, Zalmay Khalilzad, and the delegation of the Taliban political office in Doha, after eight rounds of negotiations, agreed on a draft peace treaty that included a ceasefire, the withdrawal of foreign troops from Afghanistan and the start of general inter-Afghan peace talks.

However, in September, after a series of terrorist acts committed by the Taliban in Kabul and a number of other cities, which also killed the US soldiers, President Donald Trump ordered that negotiations with the Taliban be stopped and the agreement be canceled.

In mid-January, the Taliban sent to Khalilzad a document proposing a temporary ceasefire in Afghanistan for seven to ten days. Then the representative of the Taliban political office in Qatar confirmed the resumption of negotiations between the Afghan radical movement and the American delegation.

Read more: Taliban Militants Killed at Least 14 Members of a Pro-Government Militia in Afghanistan

“More than 30 foreign delegations have been expected to attend the ceremony, but the spread of the coronavirus made adjustments. About 20 delegations and nine foreign ministers attended,” Qatar authority spokeswoman Lulu al-Khater said.

On Saturday, Qatar authorities announced the first case of coronavirus in the country, which was the last of the six countries in the Gulf region to which the virus entered. Coronavirus was discovered in a middle-aged man who returned from a trip to Iran.

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