US President Joe Biden confirms on Thursday that the US military’s complete withdrawal will be concluded by August 31, 2021. He said that the US has achieved its motto by setting up the base in the country. Moreover, Biden dismissed the concerns about the developing civil war with the rapid rise of the Taliban in the country.
“The mission is accomplished in that we got Osama bin Laden and that terrorism is not emanating from that part of the world,” Biden said. The US military stationed itself in Afghanistan after al-Qaeda attacked the US in the year 2001. “Our military commanders advised me that once I made the decision to end the war, we needed to move swiftly,” he added.
The US military troops withdrawal began last week. According to the report from multiple tabloids, the troops left Bagram Airfield, their largest base in the country. “The American and coalition forces have completely withdrawn from the base and henceforth the Afghan army forces will protect it and use it to combat terrorism,” Afghanistan’s defense ministry spokesperson Fawad Aman wrote on Twitter. However, the withdrawal has worsened the situation in the country. The Taliban are striving to control more land and is seeking to overhaul the Afghan government.
Even on the withdrawal of the military troops, the US will maintain the security of diplomats in the country and continue to support the Afghan government. “We did not go to Afghanistan to nation-build. And it’s the right and the responsibility of Afghan people alone to decide their future, and how they want to run their country,” Biden spoke from the East Room of the White House. There was never any doubt that our military performed this task efficiently and with the highest level of professionalism,” he said.
Biden Optimistic About Afghan Military
Last year, the Trump administration and Taliban signed an agreement, which aimed at paving peace in Afghanistan and the US military troops leaving the country’s soil by May 2020. The agreement also seeks to negotiate a peace agreement with the government in Kabul. In the speech, he said that the only way to maintain stability in Afghanistan is through the agreement with the Taliban regional leaders.
Biden said that during his tenure as a vice president, he was skeptical about the US mission in Afghanistan. On Thursday, he noted that he argued that a minimal military footprint would be enough to fight against terrorism. Nevertheless, former President Obama chose to increase the number of troops on foreign oil. Biden added that even though he is not sure about Taliban commitment to the agreement, he is optimistic that Afghan military is “better trained, better equipped, and more and more competent in terms of conducting war.”
Speaking about the future of Afghanistan, Biden said that “it’s up to the people of Afghanistan to decide on what government they want, not for us to impose the government on them. “No country’s ever been able to do that,” he added.
Afghan Government Met Taliban Representatives
The Iran foreign ministry said on Thursday that the Afghan government delegation has met Taliban representatives. After the talks, a joint statement was released by two entities, which said that “war is not the solution to the Afghanistan problem.” The two entities agreed on working on the solution to achieve long-lasting peace, and create an Islamic state.
“Both sides condemn attacks that target people’s homes, mosques, and hospitals and lead to destruction, and also condemn the destruction of public institutions and call for the punishment of the perpetrators,” the statement reads. Meanwhile, Iran’s foreign minister Mohammad Javad Zarif issued another statement that said, “Bravery in peace is more important than bravery in war because, for peace, one must sacrifice and set aside maximum demands and consider the other side’s demands.”