The Taliban have said they will not work with the US to contain extremism in Afghanistan

The Taliban said on Saturday that they would not cooperate with the U.S. to contain extremism in Afghanistan.

Taliban political spokesman Suhail Shaheen told the Associated Press the group is free to deal with extremist groups such as the Islamic State.

“We were able to discuss Daesh independently,” Shaheen said, using an Arabic acronym for the group.

The position will come early in the conversation between senior Taliban officials and U.S. officials in Doha, Qatar.

This is the first direct conversation the two groups have had since the U.S. evacuated Afghanistan in August, with the U.S. saying the talks are not a sign that the Taliban will be recognized by the U.S., according to the AP.

Terrorism has become an issue for the Taliban, as the group is known as Islamic State Khorasan recently claimed a suicide bomber attack on a mosque that killed more than 40 people.

Meetings in Qatar will take place on Saturday and Sunday, and officials are expected to discuss terrorism and the evacuation of many American and Afghan allies.

Two senior administration officials told Reuters that Tom West, deputy special representative for Afghanistan reconciliation at the State Department, and Sarah Charles, assistant director of the U.S. Agency for International Development’s Bureau for Humanitarian Assistance, were two to individuals expected to be in the meetings.


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