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Is the US letting the Taliban loose at the cost of Afghanistan? 5 Geopolitical Effects You Need to Know

1. Does the latest suicide bomb put the deal with the US at risk?

On Saturday night, a suicide bomber killed at least 63 people and wounded 182 in an explosion at a packed wedding hall in Kabul. An Afghan government spokesperson said the bomber detonated inside the wedding reception, where more than 1,000 guests had gathered to celebrate a marriage. “Everybody was running,” a waiter at the hall, Sayed Agha Shah, told Reuters. “Several of our waiters were killed and wounded.” A spokesperson for Afghanistan’s president, Ashraf Ghani, called the attack a “heinous crime against our people,” Glasse says. No group has claimed responsibility for the bombing and the Taliban denied being behind it. However, it is possible that the Taliban is behind it and trying to cover up the attack in light of ongoing negotiations with the US. If this is true, it could put negotiations with the US for its withdrawal from Afghanistan at risk, as the Taliban would be seen as untrustworthy.

2. Taliban says differences with the US resolved

Meanwhile, the Taliban have appeared to have found a deal with the US regarding the withdrawal of US troops from Afghanistan, as Zalmay Khalilzad, the American envoy who has been leading the talks since they began late last year, tweeted that they had made “excellent progress.”The Taliban have kept up a near-daily rate of deadly attacks, despite holding several rounds of peace talks with Khalilzad since his appointment almost a year ago. The Taliban now control roughly half of Afghanistan and are at their strongest since 2001, when the U.S.-led invasion toppled their government after it harboured al-Qaida leader Osama bin Laden. The US is, therefore, withdrawing at the wrong time according to some.

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