Why is the US planning to send aid to Afghanistan?
Possibility of US aid to Afghanistan
The U.S. has agreed to provide humanitarian aid to a desperately poor Afghanistan on the brink of an economic disaster, while refusing to give political recognition to the country’s new Taliban rulers, the Taliban said Sunday.
The statement came at the end of the first direct talks between the former foes since the chaotic withdrawal of U.S. troops at the end of August.
The U.S. statement was less definitive, saying only that the two sides “discussed the United States’ provision of robust humanitarian assistance, directly to the Afghan people.”
The Taliban said the talks held in Doha, Qatar, “went well,” with Washington freeing up humanitarian aid to Afghanistan after agreeing not to link such assistance to formal recognition of the Taliban.
The United States made it clear that the talks were in no way a preamble to recognition of the Taliban, who swept into power Aug. 15 after the U.S.-allied government collapsed.
State Department spokesman Ned Price called the discussions “candid and professional,” with the U.S. side reiterating that the Taliban will be judged on their actions, not only their words.
“The U.S. delegation focused on security and terrorism concerns and safe passage for U.S. citizens, other foreign nationals and our Afghan partners, as well as on human rights, including the meaningful participation of women and girls in all aspects of Afghan society,” he said in a statement.
Protecting remaining US citizens
During the meeting, US officials were expected to press the Taliban to allow Americans and others to leave Afghanistan. In its statement, the Taliban said without elaborating that it would “facilitate principled movement of foreign nationals”.
The Biden administration has fielded questions and complaints about the slow pace of U.S.-facilitated evacuations from Taliban-ruled Afghanistan since the U.S. withdrawal.
State Department spokesman Ned Price said Thursday that 105 U.S. citizens and 95 green card holders had left since then on flights facilitated by the U.S. That number had not changed for more than a week.
U.S. veterans and other individuals have helped others leave the country on charter flights, and some Americans and others have gotten out across land borders.
Hundreds of other foreign nationals and Afghans have also left on recent flights.