Esper says Taliban deal is promising but not without risk

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ROBERT BURNS and MATTHEW LEE Associated Press MUNICH (AP) — U.S. Defense Secretary Mark Esper said Saturday that a truce agreement between the United States and the Taliban that could lead to the withdrawal of American troops from Afghanistan is not without risk but "looks very promising." Ahead of a formal announcement of the seven-day "reduction in violence" deal, Esper said it was time to give peace a chance in Afghanistan through a political negotiation. He spoke a day after a senior U.S. official said the deal had been concluded and would take effect very soon. Expectations are that agreement will be formally announced on Sunday and that the reduction in violence will begin on Monday, according to people familiar with the plan. "So we have on the table right now a reduction in
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