US President Donald Trump says peace talks with Taliban leaders are off and he was still thinking about a troop drawdown from Afghanistan.
US President Donald Trump on Monday said that long-running talks with the Taliban that were meant to end with a withdrawal of US troops from Afghanistan are now "dead."
"As far as I'm concerned, they're dead," Trump told reporters as he left the White House for North Carolina, after calling off secret planned Camp David talks on a peace plan over the weekend.
As for withdrawing some of the 14,000 US troops in the country, he said, "We'd like to get out but we'll get out at the right time."
TRT World's Yasmine El Sabawi reports.
Imminent deal unravels
US envoy Zalmay Khalilzad had been in negotiations for nearly a year with the Taliban's political wing in Doha, Qatar. What had seemed like an imminent deal to end America's longest war unravelled at the last minute.
Trump unexpectedly announced on Saturday that he had cancelled peace talks with the Taliban's "major leaders" at the Camp David, Maryland, presidential compound after the group claimed responsibility for a Kabul attack last week that killed a US soldier and 11 other people.
Taliban says Trump hurt US credibility
Earlier on Monday, a Taliban spokesman contended that the group had finalised the Afghanistan peace deal with the US and that both sides were satisfied.
Suhail Shaheen in a tweet said that the government of Qatar, where the talks have taken place, was going to announce the agreement. until Trump stepped in.
Shaheen said Trump's tweets cancelling a secret meeting with the Taliban at Camp David and calling off negotiations have hurt US credibility.
Trump cited a recent Taliban attack in Kabul, the Afghan capital, that killed an American soldier.
Officials in Qatar haven't responded to a request for comment.
The Afghan government has remained mostly on the sidelines of the US peace effort. And as Trump's re-election campaign heats up, his quest to withdraw the remaining 14,000 US troops from Afghanistan remains unfulfilled — so far.