US Secretary of State Antony Blinken made an unannounced visit to Afghanistan yesterday to reassure the Kabul authorities about the decision to withdraw US troops from the territory, announced by the President, Joe Biden.
Blinken met with Afghan President Ashraf Ghani, the head of government, Abdullah Abdullah, and other relevant figures, the day after Biden announced the departure of all American soldiers from Afghanistan until September 11, 20 The anniversary of the 2001 terrorist attacks in the United States that provoked US military intervention, postponing a decision that had been taken until May, in an agreement made with the Taliban rebel forces.
Blinken’s trip also comes after NATO said it would also withdraw the nearly 7,000 military personnel stationed in Afghanistan within a few months, thus ending its foreign military presence in the country.
Blinken sought to reassure the Afghan authorities about the departure of US forces, which were guaranteeing security in the region.
“With my visit, I want to demonstrate the United States’ commitment to the Islamic Republic and to the Afghan people,” Blinken said at the meeting with Ghani at the presidential palace in Kabul.
“The partnership is changing. But the partnership itself is long-lasting,” said the head of American diplomacy.
On Wednesday, Joe Biden had left an identical message of comfort to the Kabul government when he publicly announced the withdrawal of US military forces.
“We will continue to support the Afghan Government (…), but we will not continue to be militarily involved in Afghanistan,” said the American President.
The Afghan President repeated to Blinken today the message with which he reacted on Wednesday to Joe Biden’s announcement, showing understanding for the decision of the United States.
“We respect the decision and we are adjusting our priorities,” Ghani told Blinken, expressing gratitude for the sacrifices of American troops.
Later, at a meeting with Abdullah, Blinken repeated the message, referring to “a new chapter, but a new chapter to write together”.
“We are grateful to your people, your country, your government,” replied the head of government in Afghanistan.
Blinken arrived in the Afghan capital from Brussels, where, alongside US Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin, informed NATO partners of the withdrawal of troops from Afghanistan.
Source: with Agencies