(WASHINGTON EXAMINER) -- US ‘DISAPPOINTED IN THEM’: Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has returned to the United States empty-handed after a whirlwind day in Kabul in which he met with feuding Afghan leaders in an unsuccessful attempt to resuscitate peace talks with the Taliban that are on life support.
As his plane left Doha, where he met with Taliban representatives, the State Department issued a statement sharply critical of Ashraf Ghani and Abdullah Abdullah, who both claim to be Afghanistan’s duly-elected president, accusing them of “irresponsible actions” and announcing the U.S. would immediately withdraw $1 billion in assistance and consider cutting another $1 billion next year.
“They still can’t see their way towards wanting to get on a team, the inclusive team,” Pompeo complained after neither man would bend to U.S. pressure to put aside their differences and form a unity government. Speaking to reporters on his plane en route to Washington, Pompeo said it’s not too late for them to change course. “We’re hopeful, frankly, they’ll get their act together and we won’t have to do it, but we are prepared to do that if they can’t.”
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