US troop withdrawal from Afghanistan: hope for a peaceful future?

Anh Huyen
Chia sẻ

(VOVWORLD) - US President Joe Biden on Wednesday announced a plan to withdraw all US troops from Afghanistan by September 11 this year. NATO and other US allies have said they will go along with this plan. Many observers, however, are skeptical this decision will bring peace to Afghanistan.

US troop withdrawal from Afghanistan: hope for a peaceful future? - ảnh 1US President Joe Biden plans to withdraw all US troops from Afghanistan by September 11, 2021. (Photo: Reuters)

The withdrawal will end America’s longest war, which was triggered by al Qaeda attacks on the US on September 11, 2001. The war has killed 2,400 US troops and cost nearly 2 trillion USD.

On Wednesday, NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg confirmed that NATO will withdraw all of its nearly 7,000 active troops in Afghanistan, beginning May 1, and that the withdrawal will be completed within a few months. 30 NATO members agreed to coordinate the alliance’s withdrawal from Afghanistan.

Turning point of the war in Afghanistan?

The withdrawal decision comes as no big surprise. Biden’s predecessor Donald Trump announced that he would soon end the war that has dragged on for 20 years. Afghan President Ashraf Ghani said his country respects the US decision and will work with all partners to ensure a smooth transition, insisting that Afghanistan’s armed forces are capable of protecting the country and its people.

NATO chief Stoltenberg said that this is not the end of the organization’s relationship with Afghanistan, but rather the start of a new chapter. NATO allies will continue to stand with the Afghan people but it is now for the Afghan people to build a sustainable peace that puts an end to violence, he added.

Multiple countries have welcomed the decision as a turning point in the war, but critics say it could make it hard to prevent further terrorist attacks .

Many are concerned about the future of Afghanistan because they consider the government of President Ashraf Ghani incapable of governing the country. Peace negotiations between the government, the Taliban, and other armed groups have yet to produce any positive results. No peace agreement is imminent and the fighting against extremist militias in Afghanistan continues to drag on.

Unproductive peace negotiations

The Afghan peace process has been at an impasse since talks in Doha, Qatar, between the Afghan government and the Taliban stalled. The US has pushed for peace to be negotiated between the Afghan government and the Taliban before the last 2,500 US troops leave. Washington wants the two sides to reach some kind of power-sharing arrangement. The deadline for that was supposed to be May 1, but as that deadline approaches, there seems to be no sign of the Taliban renouncing its violence. On Tuesday, the Taliban vowed not to participate in an international conference on the future of Afghanistan, scheduled to take place in Turkey this month, until all foreign forces leave.

According to the latest UN report, there are about 500 al-Qaeda terrorists operating in Afghanistan and the Taliban still maintains close ties with al-Qaeda. International observers are concerned that if the conflict between the Afghan government and the Taliban is not resolved, it will provide an opportunity for extremist organizations like Al Qaeda or ISIS to resume operations in Afghanistan. The danger of Afghanistan falling into renewed turmoil after the withdrawal of US and NATO troops is real. Hope for a peaceful future for Afghanistan is fragile to say the least.