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Top US diplomat pledges support for Afghanistan despite major Taliban advances

Published: Updated:

The top US diplomat spoke to Afghanistan’s president to reiterate Washington’s “strong and enduring” commitment to Afghanistan, which has seen the Taliban capture dozens of cities and districts in the war-torn country.

“Both leaders condemned the ongoing Taliban attacks, which show little regard for human life and human rights, and deplored the loss of innocent Afghan lives and displacement of the civilian population,” the State Department said in a readout of the call between Antony Blinken and Ashraf Ghani.

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The pair also spoke of the need to accelerate peace negotiations to reach a political settlement. The settlement should be “inclusive, respect the rights of all Afghans, including women and minorities, allow the Afghan people to have a say in choosing their leaders, and prevents Afghan soil from being used to threaten the United States and its allies and partners,” the State Department said.

Blinken and Ghani pledged to remain in close contact.

Since US President Joe Biden ordered the withdrawal of US troops from Afghanistan, the Taliban has made tremendous gains while killing civilians and those who were allied with the US during the war.

Washington has also made efforts to help refugee seekers flee the Taliban by offering special visas to those who worked with the US army and government.

Read more: US, UK accuse Taliban of ‘massacring’ civilians in Afghan town