By Shadi Khan Saif
KABUL, Afghanistan (AA) - The Afghan government on Tuesday hardened its stance against the Taliban, vowing to intensify its military campaign against the militants in a bid to bring lasting peace to the country.
Following a string of massive deadly assaults in the capital Kabul this month, U.S. President Donald Trump on Monday announced Washington was not going to hold talks with the Taliban.
“I don’t see any talking taking place. I don’t think we’re prepared to talk right now. It’s a whole different fight over there. They’re killing people left and right. Innocent people are being killed left and right, we will finish what we have to finish,” said Trump.
Shah Hussain Murtazawi, deputy spokesman for the Afghan president, echoed Trump’s stance, saying the Taliban have crossed a line by killing innocent civilians and defying repeated calls for peace talks.
“The government is determined to defeat them on the battlefield and bring peace to Afghanistan,” he was quoted as saying by local Salam Afghanistan radio.
Meanwhile, Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahed in a statement reiterated the rebels’ resolve to turn Afghanistan into a “graveyard of the Americans.”
More than 100 people were killed last Saturday when an improvised ambulance loaded with explosives was detonated by a Taliban militant in the capital Kabul during the afternoon rush hour.