The US and the Taliban have a long history of conflict, but both sides finally managed to broker a peace deal earlier this year. At first, it appeared as if this agreement might hold out; there were no reports of attacks for some time. New reports out of Helmand, Afghanistan, suggest that tenuous peacetime might be over.
The #Taliban is investigating reports of rocket attacks on two military bases in #Helmand, according to spokesman Zabihullah, who said that fighters of the group have been ordered not to attack #Americans. pic.twitter.com/GeKXk1huXR
— AfPak Now (@AfPakNow) September 1, 2020
US military officials believe that rockets fired upon American bases in Helmand in recent weeks were, in fact, launched by the Taliban. The New York Times spoke to three different individuals, all of whom suggested Taliban leaders were behind both the Camp Bastion, and more recently, Camp Dwyer, rocket attacks.
Taliban commanders denied any involvement in the attacks, as did a third-party informant who was familiar with the zone. He did say that they would further investigate the incident, but it wasn’t immediately clear what, if anything, this means. The Taliban are known to have a heavy presence in the Helmand Province.
Taliban factions have disagreed with the call for peace with the US, but there is no evidence to directly connect them to these recent attacks. The foreign entity has repeatedly attacked Afghan forces despite ceasing hostility towards American forces.
The peace agreement not only staves off conflict between the US and the Taliban, but also sets in motion a plan to remove US troops from the region. Numbers are down from 13,000 to just 8,600 already. The overall plan is to bring the presence down to under 5,000 troops before November.
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