US, Saudi Arabia reiterate ‘safe haven’ concerns about Afghanistan

KABUL (TOLOnews): Speaking at a press conference, the foreign ministers of Saudi Arabia and the US stressed the need to prevent Afghanistan from becoming a safe haven for terrorist groups. The Saudi Foreign Minister Prince Faisal bin Farhan Al Saud reiterated that “we need to focus our work more in Afghanistan so that Afghanistan cannot be a safe haven again for terrorist groups.”
“We need to work together on common challenges and provide the right environment for the – the repatriation of IDPs to Iraq and Syria, and to also recover the citizens or the diaspora in other countries,” he said.
Speaking at the same press conference, the US Secretary of State Antony Blinken, said that Washington has demonstrated since ending America’s longest war that it would continue to be “focused on our core national security interest in preventing the resurgence of terrorism emanating from Afghanistan, and if necessary, taking action to deal with it.”
“I think we’ve demonstrated quite clearly in recent months our ability to do just that, including eliminating a senior leader of al-Qaida, who was resident in Afghanistan. In addition, we’re working with partners, with neighbors to strengthen the capacity to deal with any terrorism that may be located in Afghanistan and emanating from there,” Blinken said as quoted by the Department of State.
This comes as the Islamic Emirate’s spokesman, Zabiullah Mujahid, said that the Global Coalition to Defeat Daesh should not overplay the issue of Daesh in Afghanistan.
“Daesh is not a threat for anyone, and it is being eliminated. Of course, our operations over the past two years have been against their sanctuaries and more than 100 of them have been eliminated,” Mujahid said.
Political analysts gave various opinions on the matter: “Many of them originated from Pakistan and they are being exported to other countries. I think Daesh is hidden in Afghanistan-Pakistan and border areas with Central Asia. But their activities have significantly dropped compared to before,” said Sarwar Niazai, political analyst. “The fight that the Islamic Emirate has waged against Daesh, the world countries also acknowledged that they have succeeded in these areas,” said Sayed Akbar Sial, a political analyst. Earlier, the Foreign Minister of Russia Sergey Lavrov claimed that the US provides strong support to Daesh and al-Qaeda in Afghanistan, TASS reported.