US Defense Chief Arrives in Afghanistan on Surprise Visit
US Defense Chief Arrives in Afghanistan on Surprise Visit
Mattis In Surprise Kabul Visit Says Sees Some Taliban Interest In Peace Talks
13 March, 2018, 12:49
"It's a country whose own people and their own security forces handle law enforcement and any threats... certainly with worldwide support for some years to come", he said.
The group said last month that it was open to reaching a political settlement and negotiating, but has not responded to President Ghani's peace offer so far.
Mattis planned to meet with General John Nicholson, the top American commander in Afghanistan, as well as Afghan President Ashraf Ghani.
The defence secretary, who commanded United States troops as a Marine general in southern Afghanistan during the war with the Taliban in 2001, said that getting the militants on board for reconciliation may be a bridge too far.
"It may not be that the whole Taliban comes over in one fell swoop, that would be a bridge too far, but there are elements of the Taliban clearly interested in talking to the Afghan government", he told reporters aboard a military jet.
The Taliban urged Washington last month to begin talks to end nearly 17 years of war in Afghanistan, which suggests they want to explore dialogue.
They have offered to talk directly to the United States about a possible peace agreement.
In exchange for these provisions, Ghani said the Taliban should officially recognize the Western-backed Afghan government and the country's constitution.
The United States past year stepped up its military assistance to Afghanistan, notably through a sharp increase in air strikes, with the aim of breaking a stalemate with the insurgents and forcing them to the negotiating table.
"There is interest that we've picked up from the Taliban side", Mattis said.
President Donald Trump's administration has also piled pressure on Pakistan to crack down on militant safe havens on its side of the Afghan-Pakistan border.
Asked whether the USA would be willing to directly talk with the Taleban, Mattis reiterated the United States position that the talks should be led by Kabul.
Mattis said the jump in attacks on civilians was an indication that a pressured Taliban is unable to conduct broader, ground-taking operations.
"We want the Afghans to lead and provide the substance to the reconciliation effort", he said.
Reconciliation, Mattis said, was "almost an equal priority of my interest going in".
Also on Sunday, Saudi officials said they would be delaying the initial public offering of Saudi Aramco until 2019. On the New York Mercantile Exchange, West Texas Intermediate futures were trading down 0.6% at $61.70 a barrel.
Researchers also found that genetic variants associated with lower empathy are also associated with higher risk for autism. Empathy - the ability to notice and respond to the feelings of others - is a cornerstone of human interpersonal relations.
The Ducks potentially could stay out west and play in Spokane, where Coach Kelly Graves spent many years as Gonzaga's head coach. Bennett said Oklahomas strength of schedule, which was second best in the country, was a key to its selection.
Before he was killed, he had been investigating Italian businessmen in Slovakia with suspected mafia links. Bugar's announcement means the government created after the 2016 general election could fall apart soon.
She was entertaining, but she also had a strong voice. "I'm going to give you a 'no, ' but you have already scored major". What's the same, at least in Sunday's two-hour taped-auditions première? She seems to be screaming more than singing.
Bryan Sholomicki (Winnipeg, Man.) added a hat trick, while 12 different skaters registered at least one point in the win. Erin Latimer, Frederique Turgeon, and Mel Pemble round out the Canadian contingent in the women's standing category.
Frida Kahlo , Amelia Earhart, Katherine Johnson and other accomplished women are getting their own Barbie dolls . The family also say that they have been trying to dissolve the Frida Kahlo Corporation for years.
The Eagles (19-15), who finished with their most wins since the 2010-11 season, will face off against Western Kentucky on Tuesday. The Cards have also had their best start this year by winning 20 straight games , the longest in the program's history.
Lucy Lowe was murdered in 2000 with her mother and sister, when her 26-year-old abuser Azhar Ali Mehmood set fire to their house. Out of 12 - mostly unconnected - victims who spoke to investigators from the Mirror , more than 70 abusers were accused.
A level-one offence carries a punishment of one or two demerit points and a fine of up to half of his match fee. Fast bowler Kagiso Rabada during South Africa's clash with India in the third and final Test at the Wanderers .
Chung said Moon is hoping for a "continued active role by China" in engaging North Korea and invited Xi to Seoul. Abe is scheduled to meet Suh on Tuesday morning to hear about what went on at the Pyongyang talks.
Hamill named as St Patrick's Festival Guest of Honour
Star Wars: The Last Jedi is all set to premiere on Digital HD starting March 13 and on 4K Ultra HD and Blu-ray on March 27. Earlier this week, Star Wars actor Mark Hamill was honored with his own spot on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.
CM Punk's Second UFC Fight Set?
This date comes as a no-brainer for Punk's sophomore appearance as the event is UFC 225 in his hometown of Chicago, Illinois. After utilizing a double-leg takedown, Gall pushed Punk against the cage fence and dropped his opponent to the mat.
Frigid night ahead with snow flurries possible
Mostly sunny skies on Thursday coupled with breezy southwest winds will push temperatures into the upper 60s Thursday afternoon. SATURDAY NIGHT: Partly cloudy skies and cold temperatures continue, with an overnight low of 36 degrees.
Mark Hughes 'favourite for Southampton job'
Saints will be hoping to appoint Pellegrino's successor quickly, with an FA Cup quarter-final at Wigan looming on Sunday. Southampton has 29 goals in 30 games, winning only five of them.
Deterrence and diplomacy are the only options for North Korea
Suh is set to meet Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga on Tuesday, the spokesman added. Chung had spoken to Yang Jiechi , China's top diplomat, for three hours prior to meeting Mr Xi, the South Koreans said.
TV host Aditya Narayan arrested for rash driving
Sources told the Free Press Journal that the autorickshaw toppled after the speeding luxury auto rammed in to it from the rear. The accident took place between 1 and 2 pm in front of Indralok Building, Lokhandwala Back Road in Andheri West.
Afghan boss apologises for World Cup qualifying debacle
Their total of 153 represented something of a recovery after a series of mini collapses left them 110/8 in a must-win game. Nepal are playing for pride as it had failed to qualify for super six after losing all its previous three encounters.
Netflix App yet to come on Nintendo Switch
If the speculations are right then Nintendo might be preparing to roll out Nintendo Switch firmware Update 5.0.0 in near future. Play-Time Limit restrictions will still apply even when the software title has been whitelisted.
Police approach BCCI in Shami and Hasin Jahan case
She also released on her Facebook account several textual correspondences between Shami and many women to prove her claim. Indian cricket team's fast pacer Mohammed Shami has been making headlines for all the wrong reasons lately.
Clinton on Trump-Putin ties
Then she turned to Trump's voters: "And his whole campaign - "Make America Great Again" - was looking backward". Clinton said Trump remarked positively after Chinese President Xi Jinping's government abolished term limits.