Afghanistan: international community statement

Brussels 16.08.2021 The following is the text of a joint statement on Afghanistan initially released by the following: Albania, Australia, Austria, Bahamas, Belgium, Burkina Faso, Canada, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Côte d’Ivoire, Croatia, Czech Republic, Denmark, Dominican Republic, El Salvador, Estonia, The High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, Federated States of Micronesia, Fiji, Finland, France, Georgia, Germany, Ghana, Greece, Guatemala, Guyana, Haiti, Honduras, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Kosovo, Latvia, Liberia, Lichtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta , Marshall Islands, Mauritania, Montenegro, Nauru, Netherlands, New Zealand, Niger, North Macedonia, Norway, Palau, Panama, Paraguay, Poland, Portugal, Qatar, Republic of Korea, Republic of Cyprus, Romania, Sierra Leone, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Suriname, Sweden, Togo, Tonga, Uganda, United Kingdom, Ukraine, and Yemen.

“Given the deteriorating security situation, we support, are working to secure, and call on all parties to respect and facilitate, the safe and orderly departure of foreign nationals and Afghans who wish to leave the country. Those in positions of power and authority across Afghanistan bear responsibility – and accountability – for the protection of human life and property, and for the immediate restoration of security and civil order.

Afghans and international citizens who wish to depart must be allowed to do so; roads, airports and border crossing must remain open, and calm must be maintained.

The Afghan people deserve to live in safety, security and dignity. We in the international community stand ready to assist them.”

The Taliban are in control of Afghanistan and British and NATO forces will not be returning to fight the insurgents, Britain’s defence minister said on Monday, August 16, according to Reuters News Agency.

“I acknowledge that the Taliban are in control of the country,” Defence Secretary Ben Wallace told Sky News. “I mean, you don’t have to be a political scientist to spot that’s where we’re at.”

Asked if Britain and NATO would return to Afghanistan, Wallace said: “That’s not on the cards that we’re going to go back”

“Following latest developments in Afghanistan, and after intense contacts with partners in the past days and hours, I decided to convene an extraordinary VTC (video-tele- conference) of EU Foreign Ministers FAC (Foreign Ministers Council) tomorrow afternoon for a first assessment” the EU top diplomat Josep Borrell wrote on his Twitter micro blog.