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Obama Expects Taliban Violence To Continue Under New Leader

  • RFE/RL

U.S. President Barack Obama has said the Taliban are unlikely to come to the table for peace talks with the Afghan government "anytime soon."

Obama was speaking on May 26 on the sidelines of a G7 summit in Japan, a day after the Taliban appointed Mullah Haibatullah Akhundzada as their new leader. Akhundzada replaced Mullah Akhtar Mansur, who was killed in a U.S. drone strike last week.

"My hope, although not my expectation, is that there comes a point at which the Taliban recognizes that they are not going to simply be able to overrun the country and what they need to be doing is to enter into serious reconciliation talks" Obama said.

"I am doubtful that it will be happening anytime soon," the president added.

With reporting by AFP