CIA Director Burns met with Taliban chief in Kabul: US official
CIA Director William Burns secretly met with Taliban chief Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar in Kabul on Monday, a senior U.S. official confirmed to Fox Information.
First reported by the Washington Put up, the rendezvous was the highest-level in-person assembly between the Biden administration and the Taliban for the reason that group took management of Afghanistan’s capital earlier this month.
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The assembly occurred because the U.S. continued to evacuate Individuals nonetheless remaining in Afghanistan and Afghan allies who had assisted U.S. forces earlier than their authorities fell to the Taliban.
France, the UK and Germany have all talked about extending the Aug. 31 withdrawal deadline in an effort to perform an orderly exit, the BBC reported.
“We’re involved concerning the deadline set by the USA on August 31,” Jean-Yves Le Drian, France’s overseas minister, informed the community. “Further time is required to finish ongoing operations.”
“The British place is we need to keep longer whether it is attainable to take action,” U.Okay. Protection Secretary Ben Wallace stated, in response to The Related Press.
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Wallace, nonetheless, informed Sky Information that he’s pessimistic concerning the U.S. extending their timeline.
“I believe it’s unlikely,” he informed Sky Information. “Not solely due to what the Taliban has stated however when you take a look at the general public statements of President Biden I believe it’s unlikely.”
The Pentagon stated in a Monday briefing that it’ll take into account leaving American troops in Afghanistan previous Aug. 31, in session with Biden and allies, however dismissed the concept of the U.S. army taking again Bagram Airfield to hurry up evacuations.
In the meantime, Taliban officers informed Reuters that they’re unwilling to increase the deadline and the “occupation” by U.S. forces. The group warned about “penalties” if the deadline is prolonged.
The U.S. ramped up its evacuation efforts in current days, getting roughly 21,600 individuals out of Afghanistan in a 24-hour interval that ended early Tuesday morning. A senior U.S. official is describing it as “an historic operation in scope and scale.”
In response to Gen. Stephen Lyons, who’s answerable for U.S. Transportation Command, a C-17 is taking off from Kabul each 48 minutes.
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Pentagon spokesperson John Kirby stated the progress has been aided by cooperation from the Taliban.
“Up to now, and going ahead, it does require fixed coordination and deconfliction with the Taliban,” Kirby stated. “What we’ve seen is, this deconfliction has labored properly when it comes to permitting entry and circulate in addition to decreasing the general measurement of the crowds simply exterior the airport.”
Fox Information’ Edmund DeMarche and Cameron Cawthorne, and The Related Press contributed to this report.