US, Taliban agree to preliminary peace framework: report

US, Taliban agree to preliminary peace framework: report
© Getty Images

U.S. and Taliban officials have agreed to an initial framework for a peace deal that could lead to the withdrawal of American forces in Afghanistan, The New York Times reported Monday.

U.S. special envoy to Afghanistan Zalmay Khalilzad told the newspaper that the draft plan must be "fleshed out" before it's fully agreed upon, but that the Taliban committed "to do what is necessary that would prevent Afghanistan from ever becoming a platform for international terrorist groups or individuals."

"We felt enough confidence that we said we need to get this fleshed out, and details need to be worked out," Khalilzad told the Times.

ADVERTISEMENT

A senior U.S. official also told the newspaper that the U.S. has made a cease-fire in Afghanistan part of any final agreement.

And Afghanistan President Ashraf Ghani voiced concerns that a peace deal would be rushed, the Times reported.

Khalilzad traveled to the country's capital of Kabul on Sunday after six days of peace talks with the Taliban in Qatar.

President TrumpDonald John TrumpRosenstein expected to leave DOJ next month: reports Allies wary of Shanahan's assurances with looming presence of Trump States file lawsuit seeking to block Trump's national emergency declaration MORE announced more than a year ago a new strategy to help end the more than 17-year war, injecting more than 3,000 troops into the fight and increasing air strikes.

The two sides have engaged in peace talks in an effort to broker a ceasefire. While no formal agreement has been reached, U.S. leaders have expressed optimism about progress in negotiations.