G7 leaders committed to Afghanistan – Johnson

Johnson makes statement after G7 virtual meeting

Following the G7 meeting, UK Prime Minister Johnson says: “The number one condition that we’re insisting on is safe passage beyond the 31st, so beyond the initial phase for those who want to leave Afghanistan.”Article share tools

UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson is making a statement after the virtual meeting of G7 leaders.

He was expected to ask US President Joe Biden for a delay to the withdrawal of US troops from Afghanistan to allow for more flights out of the country. The existing deadline is 31 August.

President Biden addressed the leaders on the call for about seven minutes

We’ve got more from Boris Johnson, who says the UK has taken 9,000 people out of Kabul so far on 57 flights.

“We will go on right up until the last moment we can,” he says, adding he is “confident” the UK can “get thousands more out”.

“But the situation at the airport is not getting any better,” Johnson says.

There have been “harrowing scenes for those trying to get out”.

The prime minister says the G7 has agreed a “joint approach” to dealing with evacuation, but also a “roadmap” on the way to engage with the Taliban.Article share tools

Johnson continues by saying the G7 wants to help with the humanitarian crisis in Afghanistan.

He says the leaders have agreed to future engagement with the Taliban – but adds that Afghanistan “can’t lurch back” into a breeding ground for terror, and girls have to be educated up to the age of 18.

G7 leaders made the point that they remain committed to those values and Afghanistan, he says.

Johnson repeats that the “number one condition” the G7 is insisting upon is safe passage for those who want to leave Afghanistan beyond 31 August.

“I hope there is now a different path forward and a better future,” he says.

“I don’t think anybody is going to believe that this is going to be easy.”

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