Joe Biden receives Afghan President to discuss US withdrawal

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Afghan President Ashraf Ghani will be received at the White House in Washington on Friday. During this meeting with his counterpart Joe Biden, the issue of security in Afghanistan after the withdrawal of American troops will be discussed.

US President Joe Biden receives his Afghan counterpart Ashraf Ghani on Friday June 25 to discuss the future of Afghanistan at a time when the current withdrawal of American troops opens a period of immense uncertainty.

The stated objective of the White House: to work closely with the government in Kabul to ensure that Afghanistan “never again becomes a refuge for terrorist groups which represent a threat to American territory”.

The two leaders are to meet in the afternoon in the Oval Office to discuss these thorny issues. Notable fact: no press conference is planned after the meeting.

Joe Biden decided in April to withdraw the 2,500 American soldiers still present in Afghanistan. He set a deadline of September 11, the 20th anniversary of the attacks that led Washington to overthrow the Taliban regime that housed the jihadists of Al-Qaeda. Washington is hammering out its will to continue to “support the Afghan people”.

On Thursday, the White House announced the dispatch of three million doses of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine to help the country cope with the Covid-19 pandemic.

The fate of the Afghans who worked with the American forces in question

But many elected officials and experts fear that the insurgents will regain control of the country and impose a fundamentalist regime similar to the one they had set up between 1996 and 2001.

While Ashraf Ghani still hopes to convince the Taliban to accept a role in an interim government of national unity, the insurgents, encouraged by their military successes, seem reluctant to negotiate.

The US withdrawal has so far been carried out with full force, fueling speculation that it will be completed as early as July, well before the September 11 deadline.

>> To read: An inglorious departure from Afghanistan for the United States and the Taliban “stronger than ever”

The plight of some 18,000 Afghans who worked with US forces, who fear reprisals if the Taliban return to power in Kabul, is the subject of special attention in Washington. “We will not abandon those who have helped us,” Joe Biden assured Thursday.

These Afghans hope to obtain an immigration visa to the United States, but the procedures are cumbersome and long. The White House has indicated that it is considering evacuating some of them before the troops are fully withdrawn so that they are safe while their visa application is being reviewed.

But many details remain to be settled: neither the number of people concerned nor their destination have at this stage been specified. The island of Guam, in the Pacific, is one of the hypotheses raised in recent weeks by elected officials and human rights organizations.

Mitch McConnell wants to delay the withdrawal of American troops

Ashraf Ghani and Abdullah Abdullah, the government’s chief negotiator in talks with the Taliban, arrived in Washington on Thursday and met with members of Congress.

The leader of the Republicans in the Senate Mitch McConnell lamented, after this meeting, the decision of Joe Biden, hoping that the withdrawal of American troops would be delayed.

“The Taliban, emboldened by our retreat, will look back on years of progress, especially for the rights of Afghan women,” he lamented, fearing the “tragic” consequences of the possible fall of Kabul shortly after departure. of the last American soldiers.

With AFP

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