The decision surprised many United Nations observers. On Tuesday March 10, the Security Council unanimously approved the United States resolution which endorses the February 29 agreement between Washington and the Taliban in Qatar on February 29. After a week of negotiations, the United States has managed to overcome the reluctance of Russia and even China to endorse a text that included two secret annexes to which it did not have access.
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The resolution resumes the commitment to withdraw American troops from Afghanistan in exchange for a promise to ban jihadist groups from the country, Daesh and Al-Qaida at the top, and calls on the insurgents to enter into peace talks with the authorities from Kabul, whom they accuse of being puppets in the hands of the Americans. The Security Council is also putting pressure on the Afghan government by urging it to constitute a ” diverse and inclusive team of negotiators made up of political leaders from civil society, including women “
At the request of several Western chancelleries, the Americans added to their resolution a reference to Afghan women which was not included in the initial version. ” Any political settlement must protect the rights of all Afghans, including women, youth and minorities “, Foresees the text. Shortly before the Security Council vote, Hillary Clinton, former Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs to President Barack Obama, said there would be ” no peace without women During a visit to the rostrum of the general assembly.
At the United Nations and on the ground, the United States appears to want to speed up the timid peace process that is taking place despite the continued attacks by insurgents. Not without difficulty, they ended up getting the Kabul authorities to start the process of releasing the 5,000 Taliban prisoners. As of the end of the week, President Ashraf Ghani has committed to freeing 100 inmates a day for two weeks, ” provided that the violence decreases significantly ” Conditions immediately rejected by the Taliban. ” 5,000 prisoners to be released at the same time “Said Suhail Shaheen, adding that” this (should) happen before the inter-Afghan talks “
American support for the Taliban
At the same time, Washington urges President Ashraf Ghani and his main rival Abdullah Abdullah to end the political crisis that is paralyzing the country. As in 2014, both claim their victory in the presidential election in September 2019 and have set up parallel governments. Their standoff weakens the inter-Afghan discussions which were to start on Tuesday 10 March and have been postponed indefinitely. Delays which angered the American administration a little more, more than ever eager to get out of the Afghan quagmire.
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The army of the world’s leading power has begun to withdraw from two bases in the country, the first step in a process that will increase troops from 13,000 to 8,600 by July. As a sign of detente that had begun with the insurgents, American General Kenneth McKenzie, head of the central command of the American army, admitted having provided support to the Taliban during their combats against Daesh in recent months in Nangarhar province. An alliance of circumstance judged highly improbable there is little compared to the sacrifices made by the belligerents during 18 years of war.