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On Anniversary Of Doha Deal, Taliban Calls For Foreign Troops To Leave Afghanistan

Afghans rally in Herat to support the Doha peace talks between the Taliban and the Afghan government on September 21, 2020.

The Taliban has marked the first anniversary of a peace deal it signed with the United States by calling for the withdrawal of all international forces from Afghanistan within the timeline specified in the agreement.

The Taliban issued a statement on February 28 about the deal it signed with U.S. negotiators in Doha on February 29, 2020.

In addition to the withdrawal of foreign troops, the Taliban is also demanding the release of more Taliban prisoners and the removal of their names from blacklists.

Under the Doha deal, the Taliban vowed to stop attacking U.S.-led NATO forces in Afghanistan. But it has continued attacks against the internationally backed Afghan government.

The Doha agreement called for all international forces to gradually leave Afghanistan by May 1, 2021. In return, the Taliban committed to renounce violence and enter into peace talks with representatives from the Afghan government.

The intra-Afghan talks started in mid-September. But there has been no tangible progress yet.

All sides accuse each other of violating the provisions of the agreement.

U.S. President Joe Biden's administration is currently reviewing the agreement.

Meanwhile, NATO allies are considering a possible extension of their presence in Afghanistan amid concerns that the Taliban could seize power if troops withdraw too soon.

The Taliban has warned of a "never seen before" war and is rejecting a possible extension of the troops' withdrawal timeline.

Based on reporting by RFE/RL's Radio Free Afghanistan, Reuters, AP, and AFP