ASIA NEWS NETWORK
WE KNOW ASIA BETTER
No chance of accord with Taliban: US envoy
Publication Date : 18-07-2012
Ryan Crocker, the outgoing US Ambassador to Afghanistan, has said the United States will continue to fight the Pakistan-based Haqqani faction of Taliban until it leaves and expressed scepticism about reaching an agreement with Taliban in general.
In an interview with Philadelphia Inquirer, published yesterday, Crocker, who has also served as envoy to Pakistan, maintained: "We will have to find ways to kill as many Haqqanis as we can."
But he also expressed optimism about getting "some significant number of (other) Taliban leaders willing to reconcile," as well as getting foot soldiers to change sides.
On the prospect reaching a "broad peace agreement" with Taliban, Crocker said: "There will be no negotiated deal with Mullah Omar. It wouldn't work here. You have a fractured, divided Taliban."
He said: "We haven't talked to the Taliban in months," he noted.
"It has to be an Afghan deal," he insisted.
Crocker told the Inquirer, "We can't assume that situation will change", but stressed the need for resuming a "high-level strategic dialogue" with Pakistan.
He stressed the importance of a recent encounter at a peace forum in Kyoto, between a high-ranking Taliban and a senior adviser to Afghan President Karzai.