One of the UK’s most senior intelligence chiefs has held talks with Taliban leaders to barter win passage out of Afghanistan for British nationals and Afghans who worked with UK forces, and to thought assurances that the country isn’t any longer going to turn into a unfriendly for international terrorists.
Sir Simon Gass, the chair of the joint intelligence committee, travelled to Doha in Qatar about a days ago, the build plenty of the Taliban’s exiled leadership relies mostly, to confer with Afghanistan’s novel rulers as UK, US and other western troops pulled out.
The discussions with the neighborhood that the UK and its allies spent 20 years fighting are segment of a considerable broader British and western effort to keep understandings with the Taliban that will eventually consequence in diplomatic recognition.
But there is an instantaneous emphasis in the support-channel discussions on trying to enable Afghans who’re looking to come to the UK win passage to neighbouring countries akin to Pakistan, Uzbekistan and Tajikistan.
Thousands of Afghans listed as at-threat by the Overseas Place of work might maybe well well no longer be picked up when the emergency airlift ended over the weekend. A additional 1,000 Afghan interpreters and their relations are caught in the country, with an entitlement to resettle in the UK.
Gass has been named by Boris Johnson as his particular representative for Afghan transition, tasked with leading the doubtlessly fraught negotiations, which come at a time when the UN has accused the Taliban of engaging in summary executions of aged Afghan infantrymen and others who worked with the ousted government.
A Downing Street spokesperson said: “The prime minister’s particular representative, Simon Gass, has travelled to Doha and is meeting with senior Taliban representatives to underline the importance of win passage out of Afghanistan for British nationals, and these Afghans who bear worked with us over the previous 20 years.”
The UK is wanting to manual certain of Afghanistan becoming a unfriendly for international terrorism, which according to British sources is one of the subject issues under discussion in the meetings. While the native Islamic Recount affiliate, ISKP, claimed responsibility for a terror assault that killed nearly 200 of us on the airport on Thursday, the neighborhood is antagonistic to the Taliban and would not bear the aptitude to strike overseas.
Nonetheless, British security businesses are concerned that the Taliban might maybe well well enable jihadist groups to space up training camps corresponding to these speed by al-Qaida earlier than September 11.
Aid-channel conversations involving intelligence chiefs talking to aged and even latest enemies are nothing novel. The CIA chief, William Burns, met the Taliban’s de facto leader Abdul Ghani Baradar over a week ago to converse about the final exit of the US from the country, on the discontinue of the 20-12 months conflict.
The UK fought alongside the US in Afghanistan between 2001 and 2014. A total of 457 British personnel died in the conflict fighting Taliban infantrymen, many in bitter fighting in the southern province of Helmand.
Britain’s overseas intelligence carrier MI6 has additionally been engrossing during the crisis, with Pakistani media reporting that Sir Richard Moore, the agency’s head, met Pakistan’s chief of military workers, Gen Qamar Javed Bajwa, closing week to converse about intelligence and defence collaboration after the withdrawal from Afghanistan.
Concerns among MPs remain excessive about the safety of of us trapped there who bear contacted of us in the UK asking for relieve with resettlement. Earlier on Tuesday in a briefing for MPs the defence secretary, Ben Wallace, said that Afghans will bear to “use their judgment” in deciding whether to flit to the border.