US envoy to warn Taliban not to bet on Afghan takeover

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KABUL, Afghanistan (AP) — A U.S. peace envoy is back in the Middle East to warn the Taliban not to pursue a military victory on the ground in Afghanistan. He is expected to deliver a blunt message — that a Taliban government installed by force will not be recognized by the international community. The U.S. State Department said Zalmay Khalilzad, the U.S. envoy, was in Doha, Qatar, where the Taliban maintain a political office. Khalilzad’s mission is to “help formulate a joint international response to the rapidly deteriorating situation in Afghanistan.” The development comes amid a weekslong, relentless Taliban offensive as American and NATO forces finalize their pullout from the war-torn country. 

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