Friday 13 August 2021 / 5:06 PM Foreign Policy / Lisa Nandy

Lisa Nandy responds to the continued advancement of Taliban forces in Afghanistan

Lisa Nandy MP, Labour’s Shadow Foreign Secretary, responding to the continued advancement of Taliban forces in Afghanistan, said:

“The horror unfolding in Afghanistan is a tragedy on an immense scale. With the Taliban advancing across the country, and troops now deployed to evacuate British nationals, it is hard to look at the current situation as anything other than an unfolding humanitarian disaster.

“The Afghan people are facing the consequences of long-term strategic failures to forge a lasting political settlement, engage regional partners and build up Afghan government capacity and legitimacy. That has put at risk what so many British soldiers, coalition forces and Afghans have bravely fought for and threatens a return to the cruelty of the past, especially for women and girls across Afghanistan.

“This is not inevitable and we are not powerless. The Government must examine all possible measures it can take to back the Afghan army so they have the means and support to fight back. There should be an emergency meeting of NATO to explore what steps could be taken in step with our allies to arrest the Taliban’s advance.  The Government should call an urgent meeting of the UN Security Council, to engage regional partners and rally support for the Afghan government. And Britain must play our role in international efforts to support refugees, including safe and legal routes.

“We have an obligation to the people of Afghanistan who have suffered so much – but the Government is sending all the wrong signals, slashing aid to the country as it faces a humanitarian crisis and dragging its feet over resettling Afghans who have supported the UK presence in the country.”