For a gruesome hospital attack in Afghanistan this week that killed two newborn babies, the US blamed Islamic State militants – not the Taliban on Thursday. This renewed calls for Afghans to embrace a troubled peace push with the Taliban insurgency.
It remains unclear if the US declaration would be enough to bolster the peace effort and reverse a decision by the Kabul government to resume offensive operations against the Taliban.
Following the hospital attack in Kabul and a suicide bombing in Nangarhar province that killed scores of people, The Afghan President Ashraf Ghani ordered the military on Tuesday to switch to “offensive mode” against the Taliban.
US Special Representative Zalmay Khalilzad blamed Islamic State for both attacks in a statement issued on Twitter. “Rather than falling into the ISIS trap and delay peace or create obstacles, Afghans must come together to crush this menace and pursue a historic peace opportunity,” Khalilzad said.