Taliban escalated terror attacks, protected Al-Qaeda during talks with US: Pentagon

Washington DC [US] : The resurgent Taliban escalated its own terror attacks across Afghanistan, including female government officials, aid and healthcare workers and protected al-Qaeda even while it was negotiating with the US government, a Department of Defense report said on Tuesday.

“According to an Afghan Ministry of Defense spokesperson, violent incidents increased by nearly 25 percent around the country since President Biden announced the revised withdrawal deadline, with Taliban attacks reported in 21 of the 34 provinces,” the report said.

It went on to say that some US commanders have argued that the Taliban violated its February 2020 deal by continuing attacks on the Afghan forces and failing to cut ties with al-Qaeda and other extremist groups.
“Additionally, the Taliban continued to maintain its relationship with al-Qaeda, providing safe haven for the terrorist group in Afghanistan,” the report said.
The increased Taliban violence in the second quarter of this year also limited access for humanitarian workers and “specifically targeted female government, aid, and healthcare workers,” the report added.

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