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New reality' established in Afghan with Taliban takeover, foreign troops' pullout: Imran Khan at SCO summit

Addressing the 20th Shanghai Cooperation Organisation Council of Heads of State (SCO-CHS) Summit in Tajikistan’s capital, Dushanbe, Khan said it is important to ensure respect for the rights of all Afghans while ensuring that it is never again a safe haven for terrorists.

September 17, 2021 / 03:00 PM IST
File image: Pakistan's Prime Minister Imran Khan

File image: Pakistan's Prime Minister Imran Khan

Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan on Friday said that a "new reality" has been established in Afghanistan after the Taliban takeover of power in Kabul and it is now in the international community’s collective interest to ensure that there is no renewed conflict and the security situation is stabilised in the war-torn country.

Addressing the 20th Shanghai Cooperation Organisation Council of Heads of State (SCO-CHS) Summit in Tajikistan’s capital, Dushanbe, Khan said it is important to ensure respect for the rights of all Afghans while ensuring that it is never again a safe haven for terrorists.

Pakistan, which had suffered due to the spillover of conflict and instability in Afghanistan, had an interest in a peaceful and stable Afghanistan, he was quoted as saying by the Dawn newspaper.

Prime Minister Khan said that a "new reality" had been established in Afghanistan after the Taliban takeover and withdrawal of foreign troops.

"That all this happened without bloodshed, without civil war and without mass exodus of refugees, should be a matter of relief.

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"It is now in the international community’s collective interest to ensure that there is no renewed conflict in Afghanistan and the security situation is stabilised," he said.

Khan said it was imperative to give Afghanistan humanitarian assistance without any delay because it was time to stand with the people of Afghanistan to help them come out of the current challenges.

“We must remember that the Afghan government primarily depended on foreign aid,” he said.

He said that the Taliban rulers should make good on their commitments.

"The Taliban must fulfil the pledges made above all for inclusive political structure where all ethnic groups are represented. This is vital for Afghanistan’s stability," he said.

Khan said that Afghanistan could not be "controlled from the outside".

The Prime Minister said it would be unwise to spread negativity or indulge in propaganda at this critical juncture and it would undermine the prospects for peace, to the detriment of Afghan people.

He also commended the SCO for completing 20 years and said Pakistan would continue to play its role as a member of the group.

The eight-member SCO grouping of China, Russia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan, India and Pakistan is holding its 21st summit at Dushanbe.

Afghanistan is an observer in the SCO.

The Taliban seized power in Afghanistan on August 15, two weeks before the US'' complete troop withdrawal on August 31 after a costly two-decade war. This forced Afghan President Ashraf Ghani to flee the country to the UAE.

The Taliban insurgents stormed across Afghanistan and captured all major cities in a matter of days, as Afghan security forces trained and equipped by the US and its allies melted away.

Thousands of Afghan nationals and foreigners have fled the country to escape the new Taliban regime and to seek asylum in different nations, including the US and many European nations, resulting in total chaos and deaths.
PTI
first published: Sep 17, 2021 03:01 pm

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