WASHINGTON – Subcommittee on National Security Ranking Member Glenn Grothman (R-Wis.) opened today’s hearing on the examination of the Trump administration’s Afghanistan strategy by highlighting the President’s continued prioritization of peace in the Middle East and recent unprecedented agreements that will usher in a new era of long-term stability for the region.
In his opening statement, Subcommittee Ranking Member Grothman notes that as peace negotiations continue to develop, the administration should seek to ensure that Afghanistan does not become a haven for terrorist activity in the future. In addition, he emphasized the need for negotiators to reach further commitments from the country to cement the protection of Afghan citizen rights, including women.
Below are his remarks as prepared:
I am pleased to have these witnesses here today. Through the hard work of the Trump administration, there may very well be a prospect for peace in Afghanistan at long last.
The Trump administration has had recent success with its effort to see peace in the Middle East.
Recently, Bahrain and the United Arab Emirates entered into treaties of peace, diplomatic relations, and full normalization between those countries and the state of Israel.
These agreements will no doubt have an immediate positive and lasting effect on the prospects for peace in that region.
And the Trump administration has prioritized peace in Afghanistan as its strategy. More importantly, the goal is to ensure that the country does not become a haven for terrorist activity in the future.
The U.S. and the Taliban entered into a joint declaration this February with stipulations that the Taliban would cease attacking coalition forces in exchange for a U.S. troop drawdown within 14 months.
The declaration also came with the condition that the Taliban and the Afghan government enter into peace negotiations with the discussion of a ceasefire firmly on the table.
Although those peace negotiations were delayed for months, they commenced on September 12, 2020, and I am hopeful that the negotiators can reach an agreement that leads to a stable and long-lasting peace in Afghanistan, one that protects the rights of all Afghan citizens in that country, including women.