Small Wars Journal

Talks ‘Still Ongoing’ to End Afghanistan War, Says Defense Secretary Esper

Talks ‘Still Ongoing’ to End Afghanistan War, Says Defense Secretary Esper by Robert Burns – Associated Press

U.S. Defense Secretary Mark Esper said Wednesday he’s not ready to publicly discuss how a U.S. troop withdrawal from Afghanistan would begin under a peace deal with the Taliban.

"Negotiations in some ways are still ongoing," he told reporters traveling with him to Europe.

"I don't want to say anything that gets in front of that or upsets that process," he said.

Esper said he planned to meet for dinner Thursday in Stuttgart with NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg to discuss Afghanistan and give him “a sense of where I think things are” in the push to close a peace deal.

Citing “sensitive negotiations,” Esper in the inflight interview declined to talk about specifics…

Read on.