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Over 20 Countries Issue Statement of Concern Over Killing of Former Afghan Security Forces by Taliban
Taliban spokesperson Zabihullah Mujahid, left, says no revenge will be taken against former soldiers and government members and women will have rights during the Taliban's first press conference in Kabul on Aug. 17, 2021 following the group's stunning takeover of Afghanistan. (Hoshang Hashimi / AFP via Getty Images)

Over 20 Countries Issue Statement of Concern Over Killing of Former Afghan Security Forces by Taliban

More than 20 countries have issued a joint statement saying that they are “deeply concerned” by reports of “summary killings and enforced disappearances of former members of the Afghan security forces” as documented by Human Rights Watch and other organizations. More than 100 former members of the Afghan security forces in four provinces have been killed by the Taliban or disappeared reportedly on the order of the Taliban in the first two-and-a-half months after they took over in late August, according to the Human Rights Watch report released last week. Senior Taliban leaders had said that their new government would not seek retribution against the former government and members of the military. “We underline that the alleged actions constitute serious human rights abuses and contradict the Taliban’s announced amnesty.  We call on the Taliban to effectively enforce the amnesty for former members of the Afghan security forces and former government officials to ensure that it is upheld across the country and throughout their ranks,” said the statement, signed by countries including the United States, Australia, Belgium, Bulgaria, Canada, Denmark, the European Union, Finland, France, Germany, Japan, the Netherlands, New Zealand, North Macedonia, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, the United Kingdom and Ukraine. The statement called for a full and transparent investigation. “We will continue to measure the Taliban by their actions,” the statement issued on Saturday concluded.

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