American forces see Helmand airstrikes consistent with Doha pact

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KABUL: The US Forces in Afghanistan on Sunday rejected the Taliban’s statement that accused them of violating the Doha Agreement by conducting airstrikes in Helmand and Farah provinces.


“We categorically reject the Taliban’s claim the United States has violated the US-Taliban Agreement,” US Forces Spokesperson Col. Sonny Leggett said.


Earlier in a statement, the Taliban said the Doha agreement prohibited the American forces from carrying out airstrikes or targeting anyone in areas other than combat zones or during active fighting.


 “US airstrikes in Helmand and Farah have been and continue to be solely in defense of the ANDSF as they are being attacked by the Taliban,” Col. Leggett said.


“The entire world has witnessed the Taliban’s offensive operations in Helmand – attacks which injured and displaced thousands of innocent Afghan civilians. We reiterate our call for all sides to reduce the violence to allow the political process to take hold,” according to Col. Leggett.


He said these strikes were consistent with both the US-Taliban Agreement and the Joint Declaration between the Government of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan and the United States.