A senior Taliban spokesman told the U.K.’s Sky News on Monday that the United States and its ally Britain will face “consequences” if they seek to extend their military presence in Afghanistan to ensure the safe evacuation of their citizens.
American President Joe Biden announced this summer that he would withdraw all American troops from the country by August 31. Biden had previously announced in April that the withdrawal would end on September 11, the 20th anniversary of the jihadist attacks that prompted the Afghan War. Both dates were a significant extension of the war from the set withdrawal date under former President Donald Trump, who brokered a deal with the Taliban that would have seen a full American military exit by May 1.
The Taliban followed Biden’s extension of the war – and his choice to break the agreement Trump brokered with the jihadist organization – with a nationwide campaign to overthrow the now-former government of Afghanistan. The campaign culminated with Taliban terrorists surrounding the country’s capital, Kabul, on August 15, prompting former President Ashraf Ghani to abruptly flee the country.
Taliban spokesman Suhail Shaheen discussed the current situation in Kabul – where thousands are attempting to reach the airport to avoid being under Taliban rule – with the U.K.’s Sky News, denying that the crowds feared for their safety under the radical Islamist terrorist group.
The desperation to flee Taliban rule has prompted multiple deaths in and around the Kabul airport resulting from stampedes and deliberate violence. Eyewitnesses have also reported extensive violence against civilians on the part of Taliban thugs outside the airport, reports the Pentagon confirmed last week.