Following the immediate takeover of the country by a hardline Islamist group last month, Britain has begun talks with the Taliban on a “safe passage” for the rest of its citizens and allies from Afghanistan.
The British government has confirmed to AFP that it has sent Simon Gass, a senior government official, to meet with Taliban representatives in Doha.
Most of the group’s senior leadership lived in exile in the Qatari capital until the end of Afghanistan’s Western-backed government after 20 years of war.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson came under fire after many Afghans who helped NATO – and are eligible to relocate to Britain – are believed to be stranded in Afghanistan, where they are at the mercy of the Taliban. Are on
“For British citizens and Afghans who are meeting with senior Taliban representatives in Gas to highlight the importance of a safe passage with Afghanistan,” an official spokesman told AFP on Wednesday.
This is the first public diplomacy between London and the Taliban since Britain joined the United States in a large plane carrying more than 100,000 people outside the country following the capture of the Afghan army.
The Taliban has promised to allow Afghans to come and go in the days following the US withdrawal on Tuesday.
More than 8,000 Afghans who helped NATO forces were expelled from Afghanistan and the British government said they would be given an indefinite leave to stay.
But the government has been criticized for failing to evacuate hundreds more trapped in the war-torn country as the Taliban took control.
British Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab was also condemned by the opposition Labor Party when the Taliban took control and did not leave the beach immediately.
An unnamed British minister told the Sunday Times that he believed Britain could have evacuated “800-1000 more people” from the chaotic plane.
Johnson’s administration sought to extend the US withdrawal deadline to August 31, but ultimately failed to persuade President Joe Biden.
After the Taliban entered Kabul in mid-August, the British prime minister said the Taliban should be judged not by their words but by their actions, and he insisted that Britain would not remain in Afghanistan without US support. Could
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