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Foreign Secretary questioned on Afghanistan evacuation

26 August 2021

Foreign Affairs Committee hold an evidence session on the UK’s evacuation of people from Afghanistan, following the Taliban’s seizure of power.

Witness

Wednesday 1 September 2021

At 2.00pm

  • Rt Hon Dominic Raab MP, Foreign Secretary

The Taliban took control of Kabul on 15 August. The Foreign Secretary has said that:

“Afghanistan must never again be used as a base for terrorist attacks against the West or any other country. We will have to address the looming humanitarian crisis in the country, which would also threaten regional stability, and strive to secure a more inclusive Afghan government that can maintain stability and avoid the kind of human rights abuses that the Taliban have committed before, particularly against women. We will use all of the levers at our disposal, including sanctions, aid and access to the international finance system, and we are rallying our international partners around these shared priorities.”

Members of the Committee are likely to question the Foreign Secretary on issues such as:

  • Progress on the effort to evacuate UK nationals and others eligible for relocation;
  • The security, humanitarian and human rights impacts of the Taliban takeover;
  • The use of levers such as sanctions and aid to pressure the Taliban.

Announcing the evidence session, Chair of the Foreign Affairs Committee Tom Tugendhat MP, said:

“The last two weeks have been tough for so many of us: anger, shame, even incredulity. We never thought we would see the day NATO forces, led by the US, would turn their backs on the people of Afghanistan. It is the biggest foreign policy failure since Suez and highlights once again the importance of building up networks of allies, not having a single partner.

“Many of those raw emotions have now turned to questions on the future of UK foreign policy. How will we deal with the Taliban? How will Afghanistan shape our regional strategy? How will the Government hold the Taliban to account for reverses in human rights?

“These questions, and so many others, will be put to the Foreign Secretary next week.”

Further information

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