The British prime minister said on Tuesday that the Group of Seven nations would demand “safe passage” from the Taliban for Afghans who want to leave Afghanistan after August 31, when US forces are expected to leave the country.
After presiding over a virtual summit of G7 leaders made up of Germany, Canada, the United States, France, Italy, Japan and the United Kingdom, Boris Johnson said the group of nations has significant “economic, diplomatic and political” mechanisms in place to support this demand. .
“The first condition we set for the G7 is that they must ensure safe passage for those who want to leave by August 31 and beyond,” Boris Johnson said.
Also Tuesday, a government official said, US President Joe Biden has decided not to extend the August 31 deadline for the final withdrawal of US forces from Afghanistan.
Biden made the decision after consulting with his national security team, weighing the risks of keeping troops on the ground beyond a deadline and choosing to complete the mission next Tuesday, his deadline, even before the Taliban captured Kabul on August 15.
The same government source said Biden has asked the national security team to develop contingency plans in the event that a situation arises that needs to slightly extend its deadline.
The United States has stepped up the airlift to withdraw from Kabul in the past 24 hours, but Biden has admitted extending the deadline for departure, in light of the ongoing security threats from extremist groups in the Afghan capital.
European allies, as well as members of Congress, veterans’ groups and US refugee organizations, have called on Biden to continue evacuations as long as necessary to evacuate all foreigners, Afghan allies and others most at risk.
But Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid said in a press conference held in Kabul today that his movement would not accept the extension of the deadline, and promised revenge.
Later in the day, Pentagon spokesman John Kirby said the military would need “at least several days” to fully withdraw several thousand soldiers and their equipment from Kabul.
US allies and other countries are also conducting evacuations and will have to halt operations and leave before US forces can complete their departure.
Russia refuses to interfere
NS Today, President Vladimir Putin stressed that Russia does not intend to repeat the same mistake of the Soviet Union and to intervene militarily in Afghanistan.
“Of course we have no intention of interfering in the internal affairs of Afghanistan, let alone dragging our armed forces into a struggle of all against all,” the Spanish news agency EFFECTIVE quoted Putin as telling the federal congress of his party, United Russia.
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