Brussels (Brussels Morning): European Commission Vice-President Josep Borrell stated on Tuesday that the bloc must engage with the Taliban in announcing that the EC is trying to organise a diplomatic mission in Kabul in cooperation with EU member states. He stressed the importance of maintaining a diplomatic presence in Afghanistan, Reuters reported.
“The Afghan crisis is not over”, Borrell told the European Parliament, adding that in order “to have any chance of influencing events, we have no other option but to engage with the Taliban.”
Foreign ministers of EU member states previously announced that the bloc would not establish diplomatic ties with the Taliban or re-establish humanitarian aid to Afghanistan unless some conditions are met, including respect for human rights and especially women’s rights.
“Maybe it’s a pure oxymoron to talk about human rights but this is what we have to ask them”, Borrell observed. He also stated his belief that the EU should prepare for Afghans trying to reach the bloc if
the Taliban allow them to leave, while predicting that migration flows would not be as high as
they were in the 2015 migrant crisis.
The EC plans to set aside some 300 million euro this year and in 2022 to resettle roughly 30,000 Afghans.
UN secures aid
On Monday, the UN hosted a donor conference in Geneva that gathered more than US$ 1 billion to keep Afghanistan aid programmes afloat, DW reported on Tuesday.
As the international community discusses how to help Afghans without legitimising the Taliban, many countries are hesitant to provide aid, given their concerns about how the money would be spent under the Taliban.
Former Afghan diplomat Ahmad Saidi asserted that the funding would not end up in the hands of the Taliban.“It is humanitarian aid, which will be used mostly by the UN and non-governmental organisations”, he said, maintaining that “the money will not be used by the Taliban, therefore, there is no risk of legitimising the regime.”
It remains unclear as to how humanitarian organisations will operate in Afghanistan since the Taliban retook the country.