Monday, September 20, 2021

Taliban Talks To Chinese State Media; Strongly Condemns US Airstrikes In Kabul

Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid condemned the US airstrikes in Kabul, emphasizing that arbitrary attacks in other countries are illegal.

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On Sunday, the US carried out a drone strike to destroy a car, which carried explosives and posed an imminent threat to the Kabul airport. The attack reportedly left nine civilians killed.

Nine members of one family — including six children — were killed in a US drone strike targeting a vehicle in a residential complex of Kabul. They were “an ordinary family,” relative of the dead told CNN. said.

“We condemn such attacks because it is illegal to carry out arbitrary attacks in other countries. If there was any potential threat, it should have been reported to us, not an arbitrary attack that has resulted in civilian casualties,” Mujahid told China’s CGTN broadcaster.

Earlier, US Central Command spokesman Capt. Bill Urban said that US forces conducted an airstrike on a vehicle in Kabul to eliminate an “imminent” threat posed by the Islamic State-Khorasan terrorist group (ISIS).

General Atomics MQ-9 Reaper - Wikipedia
General Atomics MQ-9 Reaper – Wikipedia

“US military forces conducted a self-defense unmanned over-the-horizon airstrike today on a vehicle in Kabul, eliminating an imminent ISIS-K threat to Hamad Karzai International airport,” Urban said in a statement, circulated in the US media.

“We are confident we successfully hit the target. Significant secondary explosions from the vehicle indicated the presence of a substantial amount of explosive material. We are assessing the possibilities of civilian casualties, though we have no indications at this time. We remain vigilant for potential future threats,” the CENTCOM official added.

CSTO Troops In Afghanistan

Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO) Secretary-General Stanislav Zas said on Sunday that the fears of the CSTO member states deploying their troops to Afghanistan were unfounded.

“Will Afghanistan become a trap, will we have to send our sons and servicemen there again? Of course not. These are absolutely groundless fears. Why? Because the CSTO is an exclusively defensive military-political organization.

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According to the charter of our organization, the use of collective defensive forces is envisaged exclusively within the CSTO zone of responsibility, that is, within the borders of our countries,” Zas told Belarusian channel STV.

The official added that the CSTO has developed a set of measures to minimize possible threats emanating from Afghanistan, including drug trafficking, terrorism, and illegal migration.

“It is clear that the situation there [in Afghanistan] is changing, and this must be taken into account, including in terms of combating these threats, which have not disappeared,” Zas noted.

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On Monday, the CSTO Collective Security Council held an extraordinary session on the situation in Afghanistan, with the participation of the member states’ leaders.

They agreed to develop cooperation in combating threats and challenges, given the increasing presence of international terrorist groups in Afghanistan. The parties also underscored the importance of restoring state power in Afghanistan through peaceful dialogue, taking into account the interests of all political, ethnic and religious groups.

Afghanistan fell to the Taliban on August 15. As foreign countries began to evacuate their citizens and diplomats and thousands of vulnerable Afghans rushed to the Kabul airport in the hope to flee. The crowded airport was attacked by Islamic State terrorists this past Thursday, prompting the United States to retaliate.

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