The Taliban and other Afghan leaders have reached a “consensus” on forming a new government and cabinet under the leadership of the group’s highest spiritual leader, and an announcement could come in days, said a manager.
Supreme Taliban Commander Haibatullah Akhundzada will be the top leader of any government council, said Bilal Karimi, a member of the group’s cultural commission. Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar, one of Akhundzada’s three deputies and the main public face of the Taliban, will likely be in charge of the day-to-day running of the government.
President Joe Biden has once again defended the US military withdrawal from Afghanistan, dismissing criticism that it has been mismanaged.
Key stories and developments:
- Biden defends Afghan exit schedule, says he saved US lives
- Taliban call for good relations with US after 20 years war ends
- Afghan withdrawal could prove to be a bigger problem for Europe than for the United States
- Biden’s withdrawal leaves Afghanistan in crisis and uncertainty
- The hard lessons of the West after 20 years of war: the balance of power
All articles are in Eastern Time:
Congressman Safe After Afghanistan Rescue Plan: Help (4:15)
Rep. Markwayne Mullin “has been and is currently completely safe,” his communications director said following a Washington Post report that the Oklahoma Republican unsuccessfully attempted to personally rescue five American citizens from the United States. ‘Afghanistan.
The Post reported that Mullin on Monday asked the US Embassy in Tajikistan to help him transport a large sum of money to Afghanistan to help with his planned rescue attempt. Embassy staff refused, sparking “outrage” from the congressman, the newspaper said.
Mullin and his office “will continue to do everything in our power to bring all Americans back from the war zone President Biden has abandoned,” Meredith Blanford, Mullin’s communications director, said in a statement. – Kathleen Hunter
UK in talks with Taliban over human rights (3:30 a.m.)
The UK is in talks with the Taliban to hold them accountable for their actions in Afghanistan, a government minister said on Wednesday.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s envoy Simon Gass, who is chairman of the Joint Intelligence Committee, traveled to Doha “to speak to senior Taliban officials,” Home Secretary Victoria Atkins told BBC radio . Her discussions “are important” and focus on human rights, preventing terrorism and helping to secure the passage of people who wish to leave Afghanistan, she said.
Atkins also said that “there are still a few hundred British nationals out there” and that the United Kingdom “is trying as best we can under the circumstances to evacuate them when we can”. – Alex Morales
Taliban set to unveil new government (1h00)
The Taliban are expected to announce a new government and a new cabinet within days, an official said.
“Consultations on the formation of an inclusive Afghan government among the leaders of the Islamic Emirate, with the leaders of the previous government and other influential leaders have officially ended,” said Bilal Karimi, member of the cultural commission. of the group. “They reached a consensus. We’re about to announce a functioning cabinet and government in days, not weeks. – Eltaf Najafizada
UN chief warns of “humanitarian catastrophe” (13:34)
UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres has called on countries to “dig deep” and provide swift aid to the Afghan people as the United Nations prepares to release details of humanitarian needs and humanitarian needs next week. country funding over the next four months.
Guterres noted that nearly half of the Afghan population, 18 million people, needs humanitarian aid to survive and that one in three Afghans “don’t know where their next meal will come from.”
“People are losing access to basic goods and services every day,” he warned in a statement. “A humanitarian catastrophe is looming. – David Wainer
EU ministers determined to prevent mass migration flows (1:12 p.m.)
The European Union’s interior ministers underlined at a meeting in Brussels their determination “to prevent the recurrence of large-scale uncontrolled illegal migratory movements encountered in the past”, according to a joint statement.
Eager to avoid any repetition of the 2015 crisis, which saw more than a million refugees join the bloc, fueling the rise of far-right parties, ministers focused on strengthening support for neighboring countries of Afghanistan and already hosting a large number of migrants and refugees.
“The best way to avoid a migration crisis is to avoid a humanitarian crisis,” Ylva Johansson, European Commissioner for Justice and Home Affairs, told reporters after the meeting. She said she convened a forum next month for countries to discuss resettlement pledges, and declined to give specific numbers. –John Follain, Jan Bratanic
Immigrant group says 113,000 people want to exit (11:50 a.m.)
A US-based group that advocates special immigrant visas for skilled Afghans said about 113,000 people who remained in the US and the NATO withdrawal still wish to leave the country.
The Association of Wartime Allies estimate is based on Afghan employment reports analyzed by the group and researchers at American University.
The figure does not include Afghans who are not eligible for US special immigrant visas but who are threatened by the Taliban occupation due to their role in the Afghan government or their identity as activists, journalists, women leaders or religious minorities. This larger group, the White House said last week, could number in the millions. -Sophia Cai
NATO chief says Turkey offers to help run airport (9:30 am)
Kabul Airport is a key link for getting aid and foreign nationals out of Afghanistan, and Turkey has offered to continue supporting airport operations even as NATO ceases operations there. low, NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg told Bloomberg Television on Tuesday.
NATO is working with countries in North Africa and the Middle East to stem any migration crisis triggered by the withdrawal and must ensure that Afghanistan does not become a hotbed of terrorist activity, he said. declared. “NATO allies have firmly declared that we will not forget all those who are still in Afghanistan, who have supported us, who are in danger,” he said. – Josh Wingrove
Bolton says real risk of hostage taking (9:14 a.m.)
The departure of Americans from Afghanistan and the Afghan allies who assisted them will slow at a frantic pace following the US withdrawal, former US national security adviser John Bolton told Bloomberg Television on Tuesday.
Bolton said a few more Americans may come out while Afghan evacuees are few. “We run a real risk here of a long and brutal hostage-taking,” Bolton said. – Josh Wingrove
Indian envoy to Qatar meets with Taliban official to discuss security (8:46 a.m.)
The Indian ambassador to Qatar met with the deputy head of the Taliban political bureau to discuss regional security, India’s foreign ministry said in a statement. The meeting was at the behest of the Taliban and was the first between officials from both sides since the Taliban took control of Afghanistan on August 15. – Archana Chaudhary
EU under pressure to tell Afghans to stay put (8:00 a.m.)
The EU should not send false messages to Afghans that might entice them to come to Europe, but rather encourage them to stay put, officials in some countries have said.
“The most important thing now is to send the right message to the region: stay there and we will support your region to help people,” said Karl Nehammer, Austrian Minister of the Interior, alongside his Czech and Czech counterparts. . Denmark as they signaled their common position to journalists.
Europe must avoid making the same mistakes as in 2015, said Mattias Tesfaye, Danish Minister for Immigration and Integration, referring to the time when more than a million refugees reached the bloc as violence raged in Syria, Iraq and Afghanistan. – Jean Follain
Merkel says to restore key to airport operations (6:50 a.m.)
Restoring civilian operations at Kabul’s main airport is of “existential” importance, German Chancellor Angela Merkel said, adding that without a functioning air hub there can be no access to medicine and aid. humanitarian. All flights over Afghanistan have been halted for the time being, with the US withdrawal leaving air traffic control services in Kabul unmanned.
Merkel also said that talks with European allies over Afghanistan are primarily aimed at trying to maintain communication with the Taliban, whose leaders have pledged to allow Afghans with travel documents to leave. “This contrasts with any form of diplomatic recognition. It’s about having close diplomats who can talk to the Taliban, ”she told reporters in Berlin. – Patrick Donahue
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