Chaos at Kabul airport as Taliban retakes Afghanistan
The Taliban has declared the war in Afghanistan over after its fighters swept into the capital, Kabul, and President Ashraf Ghani fled the country.
Victorious Taliban fighters patrolled the streets of Kabul on Monday as thousands of Afghans mobbed the city’s airport trying to flee the group’s feared hardline brand of rule.Meanwhile, many nations were scrambling to evacuate their diplomats, citizens and some local Afghan staff.
Meanwhile, many nations were scrambling to evacuate their diplomats, citizens and some local Afghan staff.
Al Jazeera’s Charlotte Bellis, reporting from Kabul, says “the airport has been the real crisis point of the roll-in of the Taliban”.
“Outside of that it has been relatively smooth. Security forces have for the most part laid down their weapons,” she says.
Mohammad Naeem, a spokesman for Taliban’s political office tells Al Jazeera the group does not want to live in isolation and says the type and form of the new government in Afghanistan will be made clear soon. He also calls for peaceful international relations.
The United Nations Security Council will discuss the situation in Afghanistan later on Monday.
Pakistan’s FM meets Afghan political leaders
Shah Mehmood Qureshi, Pakistan’s foreign minister, is meeting with a delegation of Afghan political leaders who arrived on Sunday in the Pakistani capital Islamabad.
“The Foreign Minister underlined that the region could not afford continued instability in Afghanistan which would impact negatively the objective of a peaceful and connected region,” says a Pakistani foreign ministry statement.
“He added that international community’s continued engagement in the efforts for durable peace and stability in Afghanistan would be important as it was a shared responsibility.”
Taliban takeover is world’s failure: UK
The Taliban’s takeover of Afghanistan is a “failure of the international community”, Britain’s Defence Secretary Ben Wallace says, assessing that the West’s intervention was a job only half-done.
“All of us know that Afghanistan is not finished. It’s an unfinished problem for the world and the world needs to help it,” he tells BBC television.
China says ready for ‘friendly relations’ with Taliban
China says it is willing to develop “friendly relations” with the Taliban after the armed group seize control of Afghanistan.
“China respects the right of the Afghan people to independently determine their own destiny and is willing to continue to develop … friendly and cooperative relations with Afghanistan,” foreign ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying tells reporters.
Flow of commodities to and from Pakistan disrupted
“This is a major logistical supply line to Afghanistan. This morning we have been seeing Afghan trucks laden with cucumber, grapes and melons being crossing into Pakistan,” he says.
“However, on the Pakistan side, the traffic that is supposed to be moving into Afghanistan, carrying meat, poultry and other commodities is stuck here because of the backlog and a border closure yesterday.”
EU coordinating with member states to evacuate local staff
The European Union is working with member states to find quick solutions for the relocation of local Afghan staff and their families to a safe place, a spokesperson says.
“The matter is extremely urgent, we take it very seriously and continue to work hard, together with EU member states, on implementing rapid solutions for them and ensure their safety,” the spokesperson for the bloc’s executive Commission tells Reuters news agency.
The Commission does not give figures for their local Afghan staff for security reasons.