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EU to “conditionally” engage with Taliban to maintain presence in Kabul

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The European Union will engage with the Taliban in power in Afghanistan, without recognizing their government, said EU foreign minister Josep Borrell on Friday. It will be a question of ensuring a presence in Kabul, “under conditions of security”.

EU countries have agreed to coordinate to ensure a presence in Afghanistan, despite the Taliban seizure of power, but on condition that security permits, said Friday (September 3rd). European Union (EU) representative for foreign affairs, Josep Borrell.

“In order to support the Afghan people, we will have to engage with the new government in Afghanistan, which does not mean recognition,” Josep Borrell told reporters after an informal meeting of foreign ministers from the EU. “It’s an operational commitment,” he said.

“We have decided to work in a coordinated manner, to coordinate our contacts with the Taliban, including through a presence in Kabul […] if the security conditions allow it, ”he added.

Coordinate the continuation of evacuations

For the head of European diplomacy, Afghanistan must also set up a transitional government, inclusive and representative, which will allow free access to humanitarian aid and allow foreign and Afghan nationals who wish to leave the country, as assured at the end of August the Taliban.

This presence aims to allow the continued evacuations of people considered to be in danger in Afghanistan, said Josep Borrell. In order to “evacuate the people we wish to accept [dans l’UE], we need a strong commitment, a strong contact [avec le pouvoir en place]”, he insisted.

Managing the influx of refugees

The latter also mentioned the need to continue, via “a regional political cooperation platform”, the collaboration with the neighboring countries of Afghanistan.

On Tuesday, during a meeting of their interior ministers, the Twenty-Seven pledged to support the countries of the region in welcoming refugees fleeing the Taliban.

The EU wishes to avoid a migratory influx on its soil as in 2015. Pakistan and Iran are hosting the largest contingents of Afghan refugees.

With AFP and Reuters

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