UN Security Council urges halt to violence, talks to end Afghan power vacuum

by Sami Burgaz
Council urges ‘establishment, through inclusive negotiations, of a new government that is united, inclusive’.

WASHINGTON (AA) – The UN Security Council on Monday called on Afghanistan’s warring parties to immediately end violence and turn to negotiations to fill the power vacuum after the Taliban overran the war-torn country.

Council members urged “the establishment, through inclusive negotiations, of a new government that is united, inclusive and representative – including with the full, equal and meaningful participation of women” following an emergency meeting earlier in the day.

They further “underlined that institutional continuity and adherence to Afghanistan’s international obligations, as well as the safety and security of all Afghan and international citizens, must be ensured.”

The council “called on parties to adhere to international norms and standards on human rights and put an end to all abuses and violations” while voicing “deep concern” over violations that have already been reported after the Taliban seized control, and stressing that Afghanistan should not again become a safe harbor for terrorist groups.

“The members of the Security Council reaffirmed the importance of combating terrorism in Afghanistan to ensure the territory of Afghanistan should not be used to threaten or attack any country, and that neither the Taliban nor any other Afghan group or individual should support terrorists operating on the territory of any other country,” it said in a statement.

The Taliban have rapidly taken Afghanistan in a lightning offensive that blindsided Western powers as government forces melted away. The capital Kabul fell to the group on Sunday after the Afghan government collapsed and former President Ashraf Ghani left the country.

Following his departure, former President Hamid Karzai, veteran politician Gulbuddin Hekmatyar, and top peace negotiator Abdullah Abdullah have been working to ensure a smooth transfer of power.


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