NATO does not plan to leave Afghanistan, but may consider reducing their military presence in Afghanistan if the Taliban demonstrated a willingness to reduce violence, NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said during his address at the Munich Security Conference.
“We are not leaving Afghanistan,” NATO’s Secretary General said. “We are prepared to adjust our presence if the Taliban demonstrates real will and capability to reduce violence.”
“The aim of our presence in Afghanistan is to send the message to the Taliban that they have to sit down and make real compromises around the negotiating table,” Stoltenberg added.
Earlier, U.S. Defense Secretary Mark Esper said the Taliban agreed for the seven-day “reduction in violence” deal. Addressing during the press conference on the sidelines of the meeting of NATO defense ministers in Brussels, Pentagon chief said that the initiative had already been considered during the negotiations, and in general, the Taliban gave their consent.
During the meeting on the sidelines of the Munich Security Conference, the US officials reassured Afghan President Ashraf Ghani that the United States would continue to support his country and monitor whether the Taliban follow the terms of deal.