At a virtual G7 meeting on Monday, Britain announced it will ask the US to extend an end-of-month deadline for completing evacuations of Western citizens and Afghan colleagues from Kabul.
US President Joe Biden has set a deadline of August 31 for the chaotic airlift organised by thousands of temporarily deployed US troops, but has left the door open for an extension if necessary.
Armed forces minister James Heappey and other UK officials told the British press that they will advocate for an extension at the G7 group of affluent nations’ online leader’s conference on Tuesday, while conceding that the Taliban would have a significant voice now that they govern Afghanistan.
Heappey believes it is a “hard truth” that the evacuations from Afghanistan’s capital can only continue until August 31 if they are led by the US.
“Whether the US can be convinced to stay or not is a question for the prime minister (Boris Johnson) tomorrow in the G7 meeting,” Heappey said, referring to a deadline extension.
The G7, which includes Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, and the United States, is currently chaired by the United Kingdom.
“I think everyone needs to understand that this isn’t simply a meeting between G7 leaders tomorrow; it’s a conversation with the Taliban,” he continued.
“The Taliban will have a choice: they either engage with the world community and demonstrate their want to be a me
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