Taliban deputy leader Mullah Baradar in interview with Iran's Tasnim news agency said the Doha agreement with US has been "positive so far," but if the US does not pullout troops on schedule the Taliban "will make the necessary decisions."
Mullah Baradar told Tasnim that the Doha agreement between the Taliban and the US entails the withdrawal of foreign forces from Afghanistan in a 14-month timetable.
“The results of implementation of the Doha agreement with the US have been positive so far. In the first stage, the US announced it has evacuated five military bases, and the number of American troops has been reduced to 8,600, as this process continues,” he added.
“However, if the foreign forces do not leave Afghanistan on schedule, the Islamic Emirate will make the necessary decisions,” he warned.
Baradar underlined that there is no hidden agreement between the group and the US.
Speaking to future plans for governing, Baradar said:
"All Afghans have the right to be involved in serving and safeguarding the Islamic establishment and their country."
He also urged the Afghan government to release the Taliban prisoners to pave the way for intra-Afghan talks.
“The release of all 5,000 Taliban prisoners is the precondition for the start of intra-Afghan negotiations,” he stated.
Under the US-Taliban peace deal that was signed in Doha, the Taliban demanded the release of 5,000 inmates, and the Afghan government has so far released 4,245.
In exchange, the Taliban has released over 860 government hostages, out of 1,000 total mentioned in agreement.
In such a situation, several former members of the Taliban believe that delaying the implementation of the US-Taliban peace agreement will damage the peace process in the country.
“If the Americans' commitments to the Taliban-- especially regarding the prisoner release – are not implemented by the Americans, and the US does not act in a hurry, it is very likely that the reached agreement will be nullified,” said Sayed Akbar Agha, a former Taliban commander.
“The problems that currently exist between the Afghan government and the Taliban in Afghanistan are causing more violence every day, and both sides are showing off their power,” said Sayed Hassan Paktiyawal, MP.
Intra- Afghan talks
The US's special envoy for Afghanistan Zalmay Khalilzad is traveling to press for intra-Afghan talks, the US State Department said on Saturday, and he plans to visit five nations.
Khalilzad departed on July 24 for Kabul, Afghanistan; Sofia, Bulgaria; Oslo, Norway; Islamabad, Pakistan; and Doha, Qatar, the US State Department said.
In Doha and Kabul, Khalilzad will press for resolution of the remaining issues ahead of intra-Afghan negotiations, specifically final prisoner exchanges and reduced violence, according to the statement.