Not extension for evacuations from Afghanistan: Taliban

TEHRAN, Aug. 23 (MNA) – Taliban have said that they will not extend the August 31 deadline for western forces' exit from Afghanistan.

The Taliban who completed the takeover of Afghanistan on August 15 after capturing Kabul without firing a shot, have now said that they have decided not to extend the August 31 deadline for western forces' exit from Afghanistan. 

The Taliban spokesman Suhail Shaheen said on Monday that the group will not agree to an extension of the evacuation mission from Afghanistan, Al-Jazeera said.

The move would mean “extending occupation” and that is “a red line”, the spokesman said.

US President Joe Biden said on Sunday that the “hard and painful” airlift of Americans and tens of thousands of others from Afghanistan’s capital is accelerating, but he would not rule out extending it beyond the August 31 deadline he set before the Taliban’s swift takeover.

The airport has been the scene of chaos since the Taliban seized the Afghan capital on August 15 as US and international forces try to evacuate citizens and vulnerable Afghans. A NATO official has said that at least 20 people have died in and around the airport in the past week.

A firefight erupted at Kabul airport on Monday when Afghan guards exchanged fire with unidentified gunmen and one guard was killed during the clash, which involved US and German soldiers.

Meanwhile, the Taliban have said they will not announce the makeup of its government until the United States completes its troop withdrawal, according to two sources in the government telling AFP on Monday.

"It has been decided that the formation of the government and cabinet will not be announced as long as a single US soldier is present in Afghanistan," a Taliban source said, and this was confirmed by a second insider, according to AFP.

KI/PR

News Code 177713

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