WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo on Tuesday said a U.S.-led Afghanistan peacemaking drive has seen progress since he visited Kabul last month to persuade the Afghan president and his main political foe to end their leadership feud.
“We’ve made some progress, but we see them posturing in the media, we see statements that come out,” Pompeo told a State Department news conference.
Pompeo paid a one-day visit to Kabul on March 23 to pressure Afghan President Ashraf Ghani and political rival Abdullah Abdullah to end a feud over a disputed September presidential election that saw them both claim victory and hold competing inaugurations.
Pompeo told the news conference all of the Afghan sides must begin negotiations on a political settlement that ends decades of war.
“I’m confident in the days ahead we’ll have things that look like steps backward, but I’m also hopeful that all the parties are sincere and wanting what’s good for the Afghan people,” Pompeo said.
(Reporting by Jonathan Landay and Humeyra Pamuk; editing by Jonathan Oatis)