Afghan situation fluid, uncertain amid Taliban’s ‘relentless pursuit of power’: Shringla

By Hindustan times

The situation in Afghanistan is fluid and uncertain amid the drawdown of US forces and the Taliban’s “relentless pursuit of power through violence”, including targeted assassinations and capture of territory, foreign secretary Harsh Shringla said on Friday.

Shringla’s comments came against the backdrop of the US having completed the withdrawal of more than 50% of its troops from Afghanistan well ahead of a September deadline, and the Taliban launching a wave of attacks across the country and targeting Afghan officials, activists and journalists in many cities.

The violence by the Taliban has increased despite talks with the group at different forums, whereas India has always backed calls for a ceasefire and talks involving various stakeholders and all neighbouring countries to find a peaceful settlement in Afghanistan, Shringla said during a virtual dialogue organised by the Public Affairs Forum of India (PAFI).

“Afghanistan today is in…a situation of uncertainty with the US withdrawal. On the one hand, [there is] the Taliban aggression, on the other, the Taliban has been steadily expanding its…operations in Afghanistan through targeted assassinations as well as territorial aggression,” he said.

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