The Taliban are taking over the capitals of Afghan regions. Meanwhile, a high-ranking representative of the European Commission warns that the conflict may result in the emergence of a new wave of refugees. According to US President Joe Biden, Afghanistan’s security forces have adequate capabilities to fight the Taliban. – But they have to fight for themselves, for their country. They must be willing to fight, the American leader emphasized.
According to a representative of the European Commission, about half a million people in Afghanistan will soon try to flee their country. – We are facing a humanitarian tragedy, but we are far from a migration crisis – emphasized the EU official. “So far, irregular entries of Afghan citizens into the EU are at a very low level, around 4,000 since the start of the year, 25 percent less than in 2020 over the same period, and most returns are voluntary,” he explained.
However, he stressed that assistance would be necessary for Iran and Pakistan in the face of the expected influx of migrants. According to Brussels, Iran hosts 3 million Afghans and leaves open borders, while Pakistan, already home to 3.5 million Afghans, has blocked its borders by requiring a Pakistani passport and a visa to enter.
“The EU is working with the UN to meet the demands of the displacement of half a million Afghans,” he said. – We must create the conditions for accepting refugees if the crisis continues – he said.
According to the Reuters agency, many EU Member States are concerned that the events in Afghanistan may trigger a repeat of the European migration crisis of 2015/16, when the chaotic influx of over a million people from the Middle East strained security and welfare systems and fueled support for extreme groups. right-wing.
Letter from the Ministers of Home Affairs and Migration
Agencies said on Tuesday that the governments of six European Union countries had sent a letter to the European Commission calling for an agreement to be maintained with the country regarding the deportation of Afghans who have been denied asylum. The letter of August 5 was signed by the ministers of the interior and immigration of Austria, Belgium, Denmark, Greece, the Netherlands and Germany
“The suspension of returns sends the wrong signal and is likely to motivate even more Afghan citizens to leave the country and go to the EU,” ministers write, stressing that “Afghanistan will continue to be the main source of illegal migration.”
Another Taliban Victory
Afghan Taliban occupied another regional capital – the city – on Tuesday Pol-e Chomri in the northern province of Baghlan. It is the eighth provincial capital in Afghanistan to fall into the hands of Taliban fighters in the last five days. “The Taliban are in the city now, they hoisted their flag in the central square and in the governor’s office,” said Mamur Ahmadzai, an MP from Baghlan Province. He added that Afghan forces had withdrawn after two hours of fighting. Earlier on Tuesday, the Taliban took control of the city Farah in the western province of the same name. In the previous days they took Zarandż (province of Nimruz), Talokan (Tachar), Kunduz (Kunduz), Sar-e-Pol (Sar-e-Pol), Szeberghan (Jozdjan) and Ajbak (Samangan).
Joe Biden: Afghans must be willing to fight for their country
– We have spent over a trillion dollars in Afghanistan, equipped and trained over 200,000 Afghan soldiers. They are outnumbered and able to fend off the Taliban. But they have to fight for themselves, for their country. They must want to fight, said US President Joe Biden in the White House. The president referred in this way to the rapidly advancing offensive by the Taliban and their occupation of more provincial capitals in the face of the almost complete withdrawal of US troops from Afghanistan.
Biden announced that America would keep its obligations regarding, inter alia, support the Afghan air force, maintain the Afghan air force, and pay soldiers’ salaries. However, he said the main obstacle is the lack of unity among the Afghan elite, although he added that “there is still a chance” to change it. “We’ll stick to these commitments, but I don’t regret the decision to withdraw the troops,” Biden said.
State Department spokesman Ned Price admitted on Tuesday that “the security situation in Afghanistan is deteriorating rapidly.” He also called on the Taliban to halt the offensive, pointing out that their action was against the “letter and spirit” of the agreement that the previous US administration concluded with the Taliban in 2020. Price reiterated that if the Taliban came to power through violence, their government would not be recognized by the international community and would be an international pariah.
At the same time, the spokesman defended President Biden’s decision to withdraw troops, noting that the head of state inherited an agreement made by his predecessor, Donald Trump. He added that under the agreement, had America not withdrawn its troops, they would have become targets for attacks. He also made it clear that the US contingent of several thousand people would not be able to stop the Islamist offensive. – The idea that several thousand soldiers could stay in Afghanistan and maintain the status quo, or stop what we are seeing (…) both of these hypotheses are empty – assessed Price.
Main photo source: PAP / EPA / JAWED KARGAR