State Department spokesman Ned Price said the US delegation at the weekend talks in Doha, Qatar, focused on security and terrorism concerns and safe passage for US citizens, other foreign nationals and Afghans, as well as on human rights, including the meaningful participation of women and girls in all aspects of Afghan society.
He said the two sides also discussed “the United States’ provision of robust humanitarian assistance, directly to the Afghan people.”
“The discussions were candid and professional with the US delegation reiterating that the Taliban will be judged on its actions, not only its words,” Price said in a statement. It did not say if any agreements were reached.
The foreign ministry in Kabul said the two-day meeting went well. It welcomed the US offer of humanitarian assistance and said local authorities would facilitate delivery and cooperate with aid groups but said it “should not be linked to political issues”.
US officials say they are in contact with dozens of Americans and legal permanent residents who wish to leave Afghanistan and there are thousands of US-allied Afghans at risk of Taliban persecution still in the country. Washington and other Western countries are grappling with difficult choices as a severe humanitarian crisis looms large in Afghanistan. They are trying to work out how to engage with the Taliban without granting the group the legitimacy it seeks.