Taliban chief Mawlawi Hibatullah Akhundzada has accused the United States of “violating” the Doha agreement that was signed in February last year for the withdrawal of all foreign troops. The Taliban leader also blamed the Afghan government for trying “to sabotage the ongoing political process through various means” and continuing “to engage in such activity.” “We consider the withdrawal of forces by America and other foreign countries a good step and strongly urge that all parts of the Doha agreement be implemented. Unfortunately, the American side has so far violated the signed agreement repeatedly and caused enormous human and material loss to civilians,” Hibatullah said of the message of felicitation meant for the occasion of Eid-ul-Fitr. The Taliban leader said the remaining Taliban prisoners have not yet been freed even though were set to be released three months after the launch of the intra-Afghan negotiations and the names of officials of the Taliban have yet to be removed from sanctions and rewards lists. “And an additional recent violation is extension of the troop withdrawal date from the month of May to September. All this in spite of the fact that the Islamic Emirate has fulfilled all its commitments and kept its promises as per Shariah law,” the Taliban leader said. “We once more emphasize on the need for moving matters forward in line with the Doha agreement and earnestly abstaining from further provocations and violations. If America again fails to live up to its commitments, then the world must bear witness and hold America accountable for all the consequences,” he said. Hibatullah said the Taliban have prioritised negotiations and understanding, and have dispatched a powerful team for these negotiations to move the intra-Afghan dialogue forward. “However, the Kabul administration has repeatedly tried to sabotage the ongoing political process through various means.” On its part, the Afghan government shifts the blame to the Taliban for not adopting a serious approach in the negotiations. Both sides started the negotiations on September 12 but have not yet agreed on the future set up or completely worked out the ceasefire. There has been a rise in violence since the signing of the Taliban-US accord, according to Afghan officials. Officials in Kabul said on Sunday that the death toll from a deadly car bomb on Saturday reached 55 while nearly 100 people were injured. The Taliban condemned the attack in the Shia-majority Dasht-e-Barchi area of Kabul. Daesh had claimed similar attacks on Shia Muslims in the past. President Ashraf Ghani has ordered national mourning to be observed on Tuesday for the slain people in Dasht-e-Barchi and those who died in another blast in Logar. In a video message Ghani said the Taliban cannot achieve their objectives through war. The Taliban chief urged the United Nations and other countries involved in the peace talks to maintain their complete neutrality in the issue of Afghanistan, and not exert efforts against the lives, beliefs, customs and ideals of the people of Afghanistan that could face a backlash from our people. In a veiled reference to the Istanbul conference he said the Taliban are a significant side in the Afghan conflict and no one should “equate us for those whose decisions are made elsewhere and then communicated to them.” “Any political track related to solving the Afghan issue that expects participation from the Islamic Emirate must take the Islamic Emirate into confidence in advance so that we may assess the proposal in light of our religious values and higher national interests and make a final decision,” Hibatulallah said. The Taliban twice declined to attend the Istanbul conference that was proposed by the US to be held under UN supervision to discuss the future political roadmap for Afghanistan and the ceasefire. He said the Taliban seek cordial and positive relations based on mutual respect and good conduct with all neighbouring, regional and world countries, and maintain cooperative relations within the framework of Islamic principles in all the relative fields through human and diplomatic interactions for the prosperity and progress of our respective nations. “The Islamic Emirate assures all that none shall be harmed from the soil of Afghanistan, and likewise asks others to not interfere in the internal affairs of Afghanistan,” he added.