Fri, 07 May 2021

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Some Afghans worry that the pull-out of U.S.-led forces from Afghanistan could lead to factional fighting between armed groups and warlords in the country, while some believe that "the U.S. as a big power is not a reliable friend."

KABUL, April 16 (Xinhua) -- The people of Afghanistan have showed mixed reaction towards the U.S. decision to withdraw its forces from the militancy-battered country by Sept. 11 this year.

U.S. President Joe Biden announced Wednesday that Washington would end its longest war by starting pull-out of troops from Afghanistan on May 1 and would complete the process by Sept. 11, the day when New York and Washington were allegedly attacked by the al-Qaida network in 2001.

"In my opinion the U.S. forces withdrawal at this stage when the Taliban outfit, al-Qaida network and the hardliner Islamic State group are active is not logic, because the U.S. invaded Afghanistan to diminish terrorists but the terrorist groups are more powerful than the past," a Kabul resident Farakh Shah told Xinhua.

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Another Kabul resident Mohammad Ayub expressed concerns that the pull-out of U.S.-led forces could lead to factional fighting in Afghanistan, as many armed groups and armed warlords still exist in the country.

In the meantime, a former government official and former anti-Taliban commander Abdul Basir Salangi has welcomed the U.S. decision to withdraw troops, saying Afghan forces could defend the country independently.

"The foreign forces withdrawal would enable Afghan forces to independently chalk out military plans on how to deal with the insurgent groups," Salangi told local media.

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Another Afghan resident Mohammad Iqbal said, "The U.S. as a big power is not a reliable friend, because over the past 20 years it has failed to win the war on terror. The U.S. inked a so-called Bilateral Security Agreement (BSA) with Afghanistan few years ago but failed to act upon the accord and (now is) leaving Afghanistan alone in war on terror today."

Afghan President Mohammad Ashraf Ghani has expressed his respect to the U.S. decision and said his government will work with U.S. partners to ensure a smooth transition.

According to Abdullah Abdullah, chairman of Afghanistan's High Council for National Reconciliation, the Taliban belief that it can regain power with the foreign forces' pull-out could be a miscalculation.

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