Taliban Pledge No Retaliation Against Afghans Who Worked for Foreign Troops

  • Taliban Pledge No Retaliation Against Afghans Who Worked for Foreign Troops

Taliban Pledge No Retaliation Against Afghans Who Worked for Foreign Troops

Monday's Taliban pledge comes as thousands of Afghans employed, mostly as interpreters, by the United States and allied countries during their nearly two-decade long stay in the country fear insurgent retaliation and are eager to get visas to the U.S.

The 11 passengers were travelling to the city of Qala-e-Naw when they were killed, he said.

Testifying before the House Foreign Affairs Committee on Monday, Blinken said the U.S.is looking at "every option" to help the Afghan employees - interpreters, drivers, construction workers and other staff - who may become victims of the Taliban as the Pentagon pushes ahead with President Joe Biden's order to remove the troops by September 11 at the latest. "They were only regarded as our enemies when they were at the front line beside our enemies in the front line of war", said the Taliban statement.

On May 1, the United States and North Atlantic Treaty Organisation began withdrawing their troops from Afghanistan.

Citing "several people familiar with the assessments", the report said that recent CIA and military intelligence reports on Afghanistan have been "increasingly pessimistic" and have "highlighted gains by the Taliban and other groups in the south and east, and warned that Kabul could fall to the Taliban within years and return to becoming a safe haven for militants bent on striking the west". These Afghans were viewed as foes previously when they worked with foreign forces, they said. "The French army has betrayed us", said another former translator. Over 3,000 Afghans are expected to relocate to the United Kingdom under the program. Last week the Taliban also tried to calm foreign embassies after the Australian mission shut down in Kabul.

In response to lawmakers' questions, Blinken said a backlog of immigration applications is being cleared, and he asked Congress to raise a cap on special immigrant visas for Afghans by 8,000 slots. Since 2014, at least 300 Afghans who served as interpreters have been murdered by the Taliban, according to No One Left Behind, a veteran-led nonprofit devoted to helping Afghan and Iraqi interpreters.

But amid growing calls in Washington for an evacuation of the thousands of Afghans who served alongside USA troops and diplomats, the Taliban issued an unusual statement. The conflict has killed hundreds of combatants on both sides and many Afghan civilians.

Pressed by McCaul on the dangers the Afghans face, Blinken said there may be some flexibility because the U.S. Embassy in Kabul isn't closing and security may not worsen too quickly. In the first three months of this year, the United Nations mission in Afghanistan said that 1,783 civilians had been killed or wounded in Afghanistan, an increase of 29% over the same period last year.

Mohammad Amiri said that more USA facilities and equipment, including aircraft to strengthen the Afghan air force, will be among the main topics of bilateral talks in coming days.

Foreign air support has until now played a crucial rule in assisting local forces to keep the insurgents from threatening urban centers. The group, which has portrayed Afghans who cooperated with the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation troop presence as traitors and infidels, said that these former US partners had nothing to fear.