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Taliban fighters patrol in a vehicle in Kabul Taliban fighters patrol in a vehicle in Kabul  (AFP or licensors)

Britain seeks to engage with Taliban

The British Foreign Secretary has said the UK needs to directly engage with the Taliban over priorities such as aiding potential evacuees to leave Afghanistan.

By Nathan Morley

Speaking after talks in Qatar, Dominic Raab acknowledged that the UK must adjust to the new reality after the Taliban’s rapid takeover.

He said Britain would not be recognising the militant group any time in the foreseeable future, and outlined his government’s goals.

"I think there are four key things that we've discussed and we are very like-minded on; the first is making sure Afghanistan is not a haven or harbour to terrorists again," he says. 

"Secondly, preventing a humanitarian crisis and again that's why we've doubled our aid spending for Afghanistan this year. The knock-on effect of that is third; to preserve regional stability.

"Fourth to test and hold to account the Taliban on their commitments... and obviously we'll be looking very carefully at what happens in the field of human rights and the treatment of women and girls."

He said co-operation on border crossings was an important first test of the Taliban’s relationship with the West.

Elsewhere, General Mark Milley, the chairman of the US joint chiefs of staff has spoken of the "anger and pain" of the war.

 

 

02 September 2021, 16:17