Afghan Leader Tells U.S. Audience Taliban Not Winning War by Matthew Pennington – AP
President Ashraf Ghani said his administration is intent on seeking a negotiated peace with the The president of Afghanistan told a U.S. audience Monday that his country is not losing the war to the Taliban and is not at risk of collapse amid escalating attacks by the militant group and an expansion of the territory it controls.
Taliban, which have shown no interest in direct talks with a government they see as illegitimate.
"The Taliban are not in a winning position," Ghani said by video to an audience at the School of Advanced International Studies at Johns Hopkins University in Washington as a suicide bombing in Kabul and a deadly militant assault on districts in eastern Afghanistan suggested government control was slipping further.
Ghani said that more than 28,000 Afghan forces have been killed in the past four years but that the military will be able to retake territory as long as it has an air force and commando troops. He said most of the losses incurred by its security forces were in defending static positions, so the government was rethinking how it deploys its forces…
Afghan Leader: Taliban Peace Deal 'When, Not If' by Shaun Tandon – AFP
Afghan President Ashraf Ghani voiced confidence Monday on reaching a peace deal to end the Taliban insurgency -- but warned Pakistan's alleged meddling risked sparking long-term hostility.
"I feel that it is now not a question of if, but when," Ghani said of a peace agreement in a wide-ranging appearance by video at Johns Hopkins University, where he was formerly a professor.
"All wars have to end politically. There are very few wars, particularly the wars of the 21st century, that are going to end militarily," he said…