Senior members of the Taliban, who are currently on a visit to Iran to discuss their peace process, accused the United States of transporting Islamic State (IS) militants into Afghanistan at a news conference in Tehran on Tuesday. The Taliban statement was carried on Iran’s Press TV.
They went on to add that the US forces were also helping the Islamic State militants escape the areas under the Taliban’s control. Blaming the American forces for the recent uptick in violence in the country, the leaders said the US had defaulted on the terms agreed during the agreement in February and resumed the attacks.
“We have no access to the media but they have. They attribute violence to us and that is not true. They start the violence. They start the violent action and that’s still continuing.”
Regarding the Afghan peace initiatives, Taliban negotiators said that the group was working on an “inclusive system and establishment” and was against the “monopolising of power”. They also hinted at resuming terms of reference of an earlier agreement signed with the US if the foreign forces did not succeed in withdrawing from Afghanistan.
Earlier in the day, three people were killed and seven others wounded in a series of explosions in Afghanistan after the Western countries called on the Taliban to end a wave of violence that the group denies responsibility for.
Last week, Iran’s Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif stressed upon formation of an “all-inclusive” Afghan government during a meeting with a Taliban delegation in Tehran. On January 31, the Taliban delegation led by their co-founder Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar arrived in Iran at the invitation of the ministry to exchange “views on the peace process in Afghanistan”.—Agencies