No Return to Afghanistan For Now; Human Rights in Focus During Talks With Taliban, Says US

Tuesday, 02/06/2024

Vedant Patel, a US State Department spokesperson, told Afghanistan International on Monday that the United States has no immediate intention to resume its diplomatic presence in Afghanistan.

He highlighted that the US engagement with the Taliban is primarily centered on human rights issues and the reinstatement of girls' education.

Responding to journalist Marzia Hosseini from Afghanistan International, Patel underscored that any normalisation of relations with the Taliban hinges on their respect for the rights of all Afghan citizens.

This statement coincides with the recent acceptance of the Taliban ambassador's credentials by the President of China. Concurrently, Voice of America's English section reported, while referring to an official document, that the US State Department is contemplating the reactivation of its consular services in Kabul.

Patel affirmed the US’ ongoing commitment to engaging with the Taliban and Afghans abroad while maintaining pressure on the Taliban to change their discriminatory policies.

The US government has notably abstained from official interactions and talks with major Afghan opposition groups, such as the National Resistance Front and the National Resistance Council for Salvation of Afghanistan, over the past two years. This stance persists even as these opposition factions seek international support, including from the US, for their political endeavours against the Taliban regime.

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