US, Taliban could sign peace deal in February if Taliban reduces violence: Sources

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US troops were first sent to Afghanistan after the Sep 11, 2001 terror attacks on US soil carried out by Al-Qaeda, who enjoyed shelter by the former Taliban regime in Kabul.

KABUL: A US-Taliban peace deal could be signed this month if the Taliban significantly reduces violence, and that deal could lead to the withdrawal of US troops from Afghanistan, two Afghan government sources and a Western diplomat said on Wednesday (Feb 12).

Their statements came a day after Afghan President Ashraf Ghani said there has been a possible breakthrough in US-Taliban talks in Qatar.

The talks had been deadlocked in part over a US demand that the insurgents agree to significantly reduce violence as part of any American troop withdrawal accord.

There are currently about 13,000 US forces as well as thousands of other NATO troops in Afghanistan, 18 years after a US-led coalition invaded the country following the Sep 11, 2001, al Qaeda attacks on the United States.

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