UK warns Taliban will be judged ‘by its actions’
Addressing MPs recalled from holiday for an emergency debate, Johnson also defended his government’s handling of the crisis.
UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson warned on Wednesday that the Taliban must be judged on its “actions rather than by its words”, as he revealed Britain had helped more than 2,000 Afghans to flee the country in recent days.
Addressing MPs recalled from holiday for an emergency debate, Johnson also defended his government’s handling of the crisis. After conversations this week with other Western leaders, including US President Joe Biden, Johnson said they had “agreed that it would be a mistake for any country to recognise any new regime in Kabul prematurely or bilaterally.
“We will judge this regime based on the choices it makes and by its actions rather than by its words, on its attitudes to terrorism, to crime and narcotics, as well as humanitarian access and the rights of girls to receive an education.”
As international evacuation gathered momentum, Britain’s ambassador to Afghanistan said his country is working with the Taliban on a “tactical, practical level” to evacuate citizens and eligible Afghans.
The United States is looking to get thousands of its citizens out of the country before an August 31 deadline, saying the Taliban has guaranteed them safe passage.
So far, Washington has taken out roughly 3,200 people on 13 flights, but around 11,000 US nationals remain.
The Netherlands managed to evacuate its first nationals on Wednesday, with 35 onboard a plane headed for Georgian capital Tbilisi, the Dutch defence ministry tweeted.
Most people who sought refuge in the French embassy in Kabul are now out of the country. “Nearly 200 Afghans who worked for France or who are under threat have just been evacuated from Kabul, as well as French and foreign nationals,” President Emmanuel Macron tweeted.
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