GILBERT, ARIZONA – Today, negotiators for the United States and the Taliban signed a peace agreement in Doha, Qatar to pave the way for the end of the U.S. war in Afghanistan. Among other measures, this deal commits the Taliban to preventing terrorist activity on Afghan soil, carried out by al-Qaeda or any other related group, and to releasing 1,000 Afghan security force prisoners. In exchange, the U.S. will reduce its military presence from 13,000 servicemembers to 8,600 over the next 135 days as the first step toward a potential full withdrawal within 14 months, pending the success of the Taliban in curbing terrorist activity. Additionally, this agreement, in conjunction with related talks in Kabul, commits the Afghan government to releasing 5,000 Taliban prisoners and call for further negotiations between the Taliban and the Afghan government to consider a permanent ceasefire and other stability measures. Congressman Biggs offered the following statement:
“I am encouraged by this peace deal, which is a testament to many months of tough negotiations. From the moment he began running for office, President Trump has stated his desire to wind down the war in Afghanistan, which has taken the lives of nearly 2,500 of our brave servicemembers and cost our nation trillions of dollars. The American people overwhelmingly want an end to endless wars—I hear this refrain every time I meet with constituents in my district. Now we have a plan for achieving this goal in Afghanistan, more than 18 years after the war began.
“I am under absolutely no illusion that the road ahead will be easy, and we must continue to ensure that no terrorist will ever again be able to strike our soil. Like any major peace agreement throughout history, this one carries no guarantee of success. However, I am hopeful about the initial breakthrough, and I will continue to very closely monitor all further developments as the peace process plays out in the coming months.”