KABUL: The Taliban on Saturday said that the May 1 deadline for withdrawal of international forces was ended and the group stated ‘This violation in principle has opened the way for Taliban to take whatever countermeasures it deems appropriate against the occupying forces.’
In February 2020, the Taliban signed a peace agreement with the US, upon which the U.S. and NATO allies had agreed to withdraw all troops from Afghanistan by May 1, 2021.
However, U.S. President Joe Biden has declared that the final withdrawal phase of U.S. troops from Afghanistan would begin on May 1 and would be completed before September 11.
“As the withdrawal of foreign forces from Afghanistan by agreed-upon May 1 deadline has passed, this violation in principle has opened the way for IEA Mujahidin to take every counteraction it deems appropriate against the occupying forces, Taliban spokesman Zabiullah Mujahid tweeted on Saturday.
Fighters are waiting for Islamic Emirate’s decisions based on the country’s sovereignty, traditions, and higher priorities, he said.
“The Mujahidin of IEA will now await what decision the leadership of Islamic Emirate takes in light of the sovereignty, values, and higher interests of the country, and will then take action accordingly,” Mujahid added.
Some US media recently reported that Taliban guarded US military bases in Afghanistan based on a secret annex of the Doha agreement since the last one year.
The Taliban political office in Qatar’s spokesman, Mohammad Naeem Wardak, however, denied the reports as baseless.
US officials said that they would defend against any possible attacks on their troops leaving Afghanistan.