The European Union intends to reopen the diplomatic mission to Afghanistan within a month – News Couple

The European Union intends to reopen the diplomatic mission to Afghanistan within a month

The European Union intends to reopen its diplomatic representation in Afghanistan within a month as the Union seeks to deepen its limited engagement with the Taliban regime.

The move means EU diplomats will return to Kabul about 12 weeks after fleeing the city, as Brussels seeks to coordinate relief efforts and the ongoing evacuation of Afghan nationals.

The planned return comes as world powers try to work out how to deal with the country’s new leaders. Brussels said it was seeking a “calculated approach” to the militants, and was reaching out to the administration but it was not recognized.

The bloc believes it needs a role in Taliban-led Afghanistan in order to press for the protection of human rights, to hold the militants to their pledge to prevent the country from becoming a source of terrorism again, and to help prevent a humanitarian crisis.

It also responds to efforts by China, Russia and Turkey, which did not close their embassies when the previous Afghan government was overthrown, to build close ties with the new regime.

The European External Action Service, the European Union’s diplomatic and security arm, is planning to reopen a representative office in Kabul that would house its officials and could be used by diplomats from member states, people familiar with the plans told the Financial Times, pending a final decision. for security concerns.

“There is a lot you can do from Doha,” one person said, referring to the role the Qatari capital has played as a mediator for Western countries and Taliban fighters.

Brussels sent an expedition to Afghanistan last month to assess the feasibility of returning diplomats to Kabul, realizing that without a presence on the ground, it lacks the access needed to effectively implement a pledged regional aid package worth around 1 billion euros.

Over the past month, Brussels has sought an agreement with Kabul that would allow private security personnel or guards from member states to protect the building. But she reluctantly agreed that there was no alternative to adhering to the rules that meant foreign diplomatic representation should only be guarded by Taliban security forces, one person said.

European Union spokeswoman Nabila Masrali said that “no final decision has yet been taken” on the provision of security.

We can confirm that we are working to establish a minimum presence on the ground. “For security reasons, we cannot go into details,” she told the Financial Times.

“At this point, this will only be for the European Union. Member states may decide to join, but that is at their discretion. In terms of who will ensure the security of our staff, options are being explored.

“As we have said repeatedly, this is not a sign of recognition. We want to be able to better help the Afghan people who need our help through rapprochement, and inevitably, we need to deal with the Taliban,” she added.

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