Formation of New Afghan Government Still on Hold
24 August 2021,
The formation of an inclusive Afghan government appears to be on hold as US President Joe Biden faces intense pressure from the European Union and the United Kingdom to extend the deadline for complete withdrawal. Biden has stated that the US military presence and airlifts should be ended by August 31, but the European Union and the United Kingdom have stated that this is impossible. On Sunday, Biden said at the White House that talks were underway to see if the deadline could be extended. He also mentioned the tragic scenes at Kabul airport, including babies and children being passed over razor-wire fences to soldiers and men clinging to the fences.
He did, however, say that they were included in the departure fee. “As you can see from the images, there is no way to evacuate this many people without causing pain and loss,” he said. As chaos continued to engulf Kabul’s airport on Monday, the Taliban warned that extending the US and its allies’ presence in Afghanistan beyond next week would have “consequences.”
According to Suhail Shaheen, a Taliban spokesman,”If the United States or the United Kingdom want more time to continue evacuations, the answer is no. Alternatively, there would be consequences “.
Meanwhile, according to two Taliban sources, the new government and cabinet will not be announced until the last US soldier has left the country. The haste to flee Kabul has resulted in harrowing scenes that have claimed at least eight lives, some of whom were crushed to death while others died after falling from a moving plane.According to the German military, an early-morning firefight broke out on Monday between Afghan guards and unknown assailants, killing one Afghan and injuring three others. In a statement, the German army said that German and American troopsparticipated in a further exchange of fire.
There have been glimmers of anti-Taliban resistance outside of Kabul. Some ex-government troops have gathered in the Panjshir Valley, which has long been regarded as a stronghold against the Taliban north of the capital.On Monday, the Taliban claimed that their fighters had surrounded the valley’s resistance forces, but that they preferred to negotiate rather than fight them. According to Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid, fighters arestationed near Panjshirand the area is surrounded on three sides.