US Special Representative for Afghanistan Zalmai Khalilzad resigns

Photo: AFP

US Special Representative for Afghanistan Zalmai Khalilzad has resigned, acknowledging his shortcomings and will be replaced by Thomas West.

According to a foreign news agency, Thomas West has been attending meetings with Taliban leaders recently.

The resignation came as the United States withdrew from a meeting convened by Russia on the future of Afghanistan.

Before leaving office, Zalmai Khalilzad was excluded from the Biden administration’s first formal talks with the Taliban.

Zalmai Khalilzad was born in Afghanistan and has held the post since 2018. He played a key role in negotiations with the Taliban, which led to an agreement in February 2020 to withdraw US troops from Afghanistan.

He then called on the hardline Islamic Movement and the government of Afghan President Ashraf Ghani to find a political solution to end decades of tension.

However, in mid-August, the Afghan government collapsed as the Taliban took control of the entire country and entered the capital, Kabul, without opposition.

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