The Afghan government deliberately leaked details of the United States’ secret meetings with a Taliban emissary, scuttling the U.S.-Taliban talks and sending the intermediary into hiding, the Associated Press reported on Monday.
The U.S. met at least three times with Taliban leader Mullah Mohammed Omar’s personal intermediary Tayyab Aga, who has now gone into hiding in Europe fearing for his life. The Afghan government, angry at Washington’s decision to confer secretly with the Taliban emissary, intentionally leaked the details of the talks, a U.S. and an Afghan official told the AP.
The leak, the officials said, stemmed from Afghan President Hamid Karzai’s fear that U.S.-Taliban talks would leave him on the sidelines and undercut his authority. The officials said someone in the presidential palace, where Karzai’s office is located, intentionally made the information public.
No one in the presidential palace returned calls for comment from the AP.
A U.S. official told the AP that the talks collapsed because of the leak, but said Washington will continue to pursue negotiations. The U.S. has not had direct contact with Aga in months, the AP reported...