Bronx, NY—Representative Eliot L. Engel, Chairman of the House Committee on Foreign Affairs, today made the following statement:

“Today's agreements between the United States and the Afghan Government and between the United States and the Taliban appear to be a positive first step that I hope will lead to the withdrawal of American troops in Afghanistan and an enduring peace in the country. 

“The United States must go into this next phase with clear eyes and a healthy skepticism about the Taliban's willingness and ability to uphold its commitments, including separating from al-Qaeda and renouncing violence. 

“These deals reflect the hard work of our diplomats, but I am concerned that this negotiation was carried out without any meaningful input from Congress and with little transparency for the American people—a recurring problem with this administration. The Committee will exercise its oversight responsibilities in examining the specifics of the deals, and I look forward to Ambassador Zalmay Khalilzad, the Special Representative for Afghanistan Reconciliation, testifying before the Committee in the near future to fully explain the Administration’s approach.”

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