Taliban vow to fight on after Trump says talks are ‘dead’

AFP – September 10, 2019

KABUL: The Taliban on Tuesday vowed to continue fighting against US forces in Afghanistan after President Donald Trump said talks with insurgents were ‘dead’, saying Washington would regret abandoning negotiations.

“We had two ways to end the occupation in Afghanistan, one was fighting, the other was talks and negotiations,” Taliban spokesperson Zabihullah Mujahid told AFP.

“If Trump wants to stop talks, we will take the first way and they will soon regret it.”

The Taliban’s statement came hours after Trump told reporters that the US was walking away from negotiations after nearly a year of talks that aimed to pave the way for an American withdrawal from Afghanistan following 18 years of war.

“They are dead. As far as I am concerned, they are dead,” Trump said at the White House.

The announcement followed Trump’s dramatic cancellation of a top-secret plan to fly Taliban leaders in for direct talks at the Camp David presidential facility outside Washington.

Driving another nail into the coffin of what had appeared to be nearly finalised negotiations, Trump said a US military onslaught on the guerrillas was at its fiercest level in a decade.

“Over the last four days, we have been hitting our Enemy harder than at any time in the last ten years!” he wrote in a tweet.

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