The US Department of State confirms that all concerned parties agree on the need for a regular and effective airport in Afghanistan.
The US State Department spokesman, Ned Price, told reporters, Monday, that the future of controlling Kabul airport was under discussion with the Taliban.
In response to a question during a regular press briefing regarding discussions with the Taliban and others regarding the airport currently controlled by US forces before the August 31 evacuation deadline expired, Price said: “I acknowledge that it was a matter of discussion with the Taliban. It was a subject of discussion with our allies. It is under discussion with many of our partners.
He added, “There is really agreement among all of these parties…between the United States and our partners and allies, and with the Taliban as well, that all of our interests converge with having an airport that operates” regularly and effectively in Afghanistan.
This comes while the US National Security Adviser, Jake Sullivan, confirmed on Monday that the US administration is communicating with the Taliban “daily through political and security channels,” adding: ” We communicate with the Taliban and consult with them regarding everything that is happening in Kabul .”
Sullivan confirmed that “huge progress has been made in the evacuations from Afghanistan,” expressing Washington’s confidence in its ability to end the evacuations by the time set for it on August 31.
He added, “We are trying to evacuate the Americans from wherever they are in Afghanistan,” but he made it clear that “the American forces do not operate outside the vicinity of Hamid Karzai International Airport in Kabul.”
In response to a question about whether US President Joe Biden will extend the deadline for the withdrawal of US forces beyond August 31, Sullivan said that the president deals with the matter “day by day and will make his decisions in turn.”
In the same context, the office of British Prime Minister Boris Johnson said that he agreed with US President Joe Biden on Monday to work together to ensure that all those qualified to leave Afghanistan are able to do so.
“The two discussed the continued efforts of the United States and Britain to coordinate the swift and safe evacuation of our citizens and those who previously worked with our governments from Kabul International Airport,” a British Cabinet spokesman said following a phone call between Biden and Johnson.
“The two leaders agreed to continue working together to ensure that all those eligible to leave the country are able to do so, including beyond the initial evacuation phase,” the spokesperson added.
The statement added that Johnson and Biden also discussed the importance of concerted diplomatic efforts to secure the progress that has been made in Afghanistan and prevent a humanitarian crisis.
“They pledged their commitment to advancing international action, including through the G7 and the UN Security Council, to stabilize the situation, support the Afghan people, and work towards an inclusive Afghan government,” the spokesman said.