UN council urges inclusive talks on new Afghan government

Aug 16, 2021, 12:37 AM | Updated: 1:53 pm
Hundreds of people run alongside a U.S. Air Force C-17 transport plane, some climbing on the plane,...

Hundreds of people run alongside a U.S. Air Force C-17 transport plane, some climbing on the plane, as it moves down a runway of the international airport, in Kabul, Afghanistan, Monday, Aug.16. 2021. Thousands of Afghans have rushed onto the tarmac at the airport, some so desperate to escape the Taliban capture of their country that they held onto the American military jet as it took off and plunged to death. (Verified UGC via AP)

(Verified UGC via AP)

              In this photo provided by the French Defense Ministry, the pilot prepares to take off in a military Airbus A400M to evacuate French citizens from Afghanistan, Monday, Aug.16, 2021 in Orleans, central France. France is relocating its embassy in Kabul to the airport to evacuate all citizens still in Afghanistan, initially transferring them to Abu Dhabi. Evacuations have been in progress for weeks and a charter flight put in place by France in mid-July. (Etat-Major des Armees via AP)
              FILE - In this Tuesday, July 20, 2021 file photo, Britain's Defense Secretary Ben Wallace arrives at the prime minister's official residence on his way to meet Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga in Tokyo. British Defense Secretary Ben Wallace held back tears Monday Aug. 16, 2021, as he conceded that Britain was unlikely to be able to evacuate all its Afghan allies from Kabul. (Franck Robichon/Pool Photo via AP, File)
              In the photo provided by the Ministry of Defence, the first flight carrying evacuated personnel of British Embassy staff and British Nationals, arriving at RAF Brize Norton, England, early Monday Aug. 16, 2021.  Taliban forces have toppled the Western-backed Afghanistan government, as international nations scramble to evacuate diplomats, employees and their families from Kabul. (Sharron Flyod/Ministry of Defence via AP)

UNITED NATIONS (AP) — The U.N. Security on Monday called for an immediate end to violence in Afghanistan following the Taliban takeover of the country and inclusive talks to form a new Afghan government that includes women.

In its first statement since the Taliban a day earlier ousted the U.S.-backed President Ashraf Ghani, who has since fled Afghanistan, the council stressed that Afghan territory should not be used by the Taliban or any other group “to threaten or attack any country.”

The U.N.’s most powerful body called for “urgent talks to resolve the current crisis of authority in the country and to arrive at a peaceful settlement through an Afghan-led, Afghan-owned process of national reconciliation.”

It said a new government must be “united, inclusive and representative — including with the full, equal and meaningful participation of women.”

U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres called for an immediate end to violence and urged the international community to unite to ensure that the human rights of all Afghans are respected. He said he was “particularly concerned by accounts of mounting human rights violations against the women and girls of Afghanistan who fear a return to the darkest days” in the 1990s when the Taliban ruled and barred girls for getting an education and imposed draconian measures on women.

“The world is following events in Afghanistan with a heavy heart and deep disquiet about what lies ahead,” Guterres said, and with the country’s future and the hopes and dreams of a generation of young Afghans in the balance, the coming days “will be pivotal.”

Afghanistan’s U.N. Ambassador Ghulam Isaczai said “there is no time for the blame game anymore” and echoed Guterres’ calls for the council to call for an immediate halt to violence and respect for human rights, and to “prevent Afghanistan descending into a civil war and becoming a pariah state.”

He told the council he was “speaking on behalf of millions of people in Afghanistan, whose fate hangs in the balance and are faced with an extremely uncertain future,” including “millions of Afghan girls and women who are about to lose their freedom to go to school, to work and to participate in the political, economic and social life of the country,” as well as human rights defenders, journalists, academics, civil servants and former security personnel.

Isaczai, who was appointed by Ghani’s government said “Kabul residents are reporting the Taliban have already started house-to-house searches in some neighborhoods, registering names and looking for people in their target list. There are already reports of targeted killings and looting in the city.”

“Kabul residents are living in absolute fear right now,” Isaczai added and appealed on the U.N. chief and the council not to recognize the restoration of the Islamic Emirate that the Taliban may impose.

Isaczai also called for the urgent establishment of “a humanitarian corridor for the evacuation of those at risk of Taliban’s retributions and attacks” and for neighboring countries to open their borders to people trying to escape and for humanitarian goods entering the country.

The Security Council statement, drafted by Estonia and Norway, called for “an end to all abuses and violations” of human rights and international humanitarian law, without singling out the Taliban, and for immediate access for U.N. and other humanitarian personnel to provide aid, “including across conflict lines.”

U.S. Ambassador Linda Thomas-Greenfield urged that more than 500 tons of humanitarian aid — which the U.N. World Food Program says is sitting at border crossings taken by the Taliban — be allowed into Afghanistan immediately.

“All Afghan nationals and international citizens who wish to depart must be allowed to do so safely,” Thomas-Greenfield said, adding that the U.S. promises “to be generous in resettling Afghans” and “we need to all do more.”

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


FILE - Former President Donald Trump, left, and Michigan Republican attorney general candidate Matt...
Associated Press

Defeated election conspiracists seek to lead Michigan GOP

LANSING, Mich. (AP) — The Republicans who lost their races for Michigan’s top three statewide offices after promoting falsehoods about the 2020 presidential election are not planning to go quietly. Two of the candidates who denied President Joe Biden’s victory in the state have announced plans to run for the position that leads the state […]
1 day ago
Associated Press

Estonia to buy U.S. rocket artillery system in $200M deal

HELSINKI (AP) — NATO member and Russia’s neighbor Estonia is boosting its defense capabilities by acquiring an advanced U.S. rocket artillery system in the Baltic country’s largest arms procurement project ever, defense officials said Saturday. A deal signed Friday for the High Mobility Artillery Rocket System is worth more than $200 million and includes equipment […]
1 day ago
Associated Press

Strong quake shakes main Indonesia island; no tsunami alert

JAKARTA, Indonesia (AP) — A strong earthquake shook parts of Indonesia’s main island of Java on Saturday, causing panic and sending people into the streets, but there were no immediate reports of casualties. Officials said there was no danger of a tsunami. The U.S. Geological Survey measured the quake at magnitude 5.7 and said it […]
1 day ago
Migrant workers with their belongings leave a barricaded village after authorities' easing of COVID...
Associated Press

Beijing, Shenzhen scrap COVID-19 tests for public transport

BEIJING (AP) — Chinese authorities on Saturday announced a further easing of COVID-19 curbs with major cities such as Shenzhen and Beijing no longer requiring negative tests to take public transport. The slight relaxation of testing requirements comes even as daily virus infections reach near-record highs, and follows weekend protests across the country by residents […]
1 day ago
FILE - A protester holding flowers is confronted by a policeman during a protest on a street in Sha...
Associated Press

At Shanghai vigil, bold shout for change preceded crackdown

SHANGHAI (AP) — The mourners in Shanghai lit candles and placed flowers. Someone scrawled “Urumqi, 11.24, Rest in Peace” in red on cardboard — referring to the deadly apartment fire in China’s western city of Urumqi that sparked anger over perceptions the country’s strict COVID-19 measures played a role in the disaster. What started as […]
1 day ago
A police officer tries to keep the roadway clear as people come to view the Mauna Loa volcano as it...
Associated Press

Molten lava on Hawaii’s Big Island could block main highway

HILO, Hawaii (AP) — Many people on the Big Island of Hawaii are bracing for major upheaval if lava from Mauna Loa volcano slides across a key highway and blocks the quickest route connecting two sides of the island. The molten rock could make the road impassable and force drivers to find alternate coastal routes […]
1 day ago

Sponsored Articles

Comcast Ready for Business Fund...
Ilona Lohrey | President and CEO, GSBA

GSBA is closing the disparity gap with Ready for Business Fund

GSBA, Comcast, and other partners are working to address disparities in access to financial resources with the Ready for Business fund.

Medicare open enrollment is here and SHIBA can help!

The SHIBA program – part of the Office of the Insurance Commissioner – is ready to help with your Medicare open enrollment decisions.
Lake Washington Windows...

Choosing Best Windows for Your Home

Lake Washington Windows and Doors is a local window dealer offering the exclusive Leak Armor installation.
Anacortes Christmas Tree...

Come one, come all! Food, Drink, and Coastal Christmas – Anacortes has it all!

Come celebrate Anacortes’ 11th annual Bier on the Pier! Bier on the Pier takes place on October 7th and 8th and features local ciders, food trucks and live music - not to mention the beautiful views of the Guemes Channel and backdrop of downtown Anacortes.
Swedish Cyberknife Treatment...

The revolutionary treatment of Swedish CyberKnife provides better quality of life for majority of patients

There are a wide variety of treatments options available for men with prostate cancer. One of the most technologically advanced treatment options in the Pacific Northwest is Stereotactic Body Radiation Therapy using the CyberKnife platform at Swedish Medical Center.
Work at Zum Services...

Seattle Public Schools announces three-year contract with Zum

Seattle Public Schools just announced a three-year contract with a brand-new company to the Pacific Northwest to assist with their student transportation: Zum.
UN council urges inclusive talks on new Afghan government