Mottaqi: There is no evidence that al-Qaeda is mounting again in Afghanistan

 

Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan Acting Secretary of State Amir Khan Mottaqi dismisses the US Central Command’s statement on al-Qaeda in Afghanistan as unfounded, adding no evidence has been found that al-Qaeda is growing in Afghanistan.

“The Islamic Emirate wants good relations with all the countries of the world, including the United States,” Mottaqi told the Associated Press, adding that weakening the current government is not in favor of any group or person, and this act should be stopped.

“Destabilizing Afghanistan or having a weak government in Afghanistan is not in anyone’s interest; it will not benefit anyone. We are trying to have an Afghanistan that is not at war with anyone and stands on its own two feet,” Mottaqi said.

Regarding the US sanctions on Afghanistan and the humanitarian situation in the country, the acting Foreign Minister said that the Islamic Emirate wants good relations with the US and considers the sanctions wrong. “We have stated that we want good relations with the United States and other countries. Some of the sanctions imposed on Afghanistan, I think, are wrong, and the repetition of experiences that has failed and is of no use.”

Earlier, Gen. Kenneth Mackenzie, commander of US Central Command, said al-Qaeda had grown in Afghanistan over the past four months. The Russian military chief also said that supporters of al-Qaeda and ISIS were on the rise. “I think al-Qaeda is trying to revive itself. I will not talk about it anymore, but I think al-Qaeda is trying to revitalize itself in Afghanistan,” Mackenzie said.

Mr. Mottaqi said there was no evidence that al-Qaeda has grown in Afghanistan and that the Taliban had links to the network. “If Mackenzie has or had any documents, he should provide them. I can confidently say that this is a baseless claim,” he added.

Meanwhile, the US Secretary of State also discussed the current situation in Afghanistan with the Qatari Foreign Minister. “The State Department says that in this telephone conversation, Anthony Blinken and Mohammed bin Abdul Rahman Al Thani discussed new developments of the situation in Afghanistan.” And adds that they are working to bring about reform.

Meanwhile, US President Joe Biden, in an interview with an American media outlet, once again defended the withdrawal of US troops from Afghanistan. “I have been opposed to the war in Afghanistan since the beginning, and we have spent $ 300 million a week in Afghanistan for 20 years. “But no one came up with the plan for how it would turn out.”

This statement comes at a time when the Islamic Emirate has not yet been recognized by the countries of the region and the world, despite all the efforts of the Taliban in the past four months.