CIA Director William Burns reportedly met Monday in Afghanistan with Taliban Leader Abdul Ghani Baradar, marking the highest level diplomatic encounter between the U.S. and the group since it took over Afghanistan's capital city of Kabul.
The meeting was first reported by The Washington Post, citing unnamed U.S. officials who spoke on the condition of anonymity.
President Biden reportedly sent Burns as his administration hastens to evacuate Americans and Afghan allies ahead of Aug. 31 deadline for all U.S. troops to withdrawal from the country. Taliban leaders are reportedly unwilling to extend the deadline, in an effort to facilitate the evacuations at the now-heavily militarized Kabul international airport. The Taliban swiftly took over Kabul about two years ago, as U.S. troops were completing their withdrawal.