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EU Echoes Biden Admin On Recognizing The Taliban: ‘No Rush,’ But It’s On The Table

Ashley Jarrett

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Neither the European Union nor President Joe Biden are in any rush to formally recognize the Taliban’s regime in Afghanistan, but the move is on the table.

Gunnar Wiegand, the European Commission’s managing director for Asia and the Pacific, echoed White House press secretary Jen Psaki nearly word-for-word when asked whether the EU plans to recognize the Taliban. The Taliban is now in nearly full control of Afghanistan, but it has a long record of supporting terrorism and suppressing human rights.

“There is no doubt among (EU) member states and in the G7 context: we need to engage with the Taliban, we need to communicate with the Taliban, we need to influence the Taliban, we need to make use of the leverages which we have,” he said. “But we will not rush into recognizing this new formation, nor into establishing official relations.”

WASHINGTON, DC – AUGUST 31: U.S. President Joe Biden delivers remarks on the end of the war in Afghanistan in the State Dining Room at the White House on August 31, 2021 in Washington, DC. The last American military aircraft took off from Hamid Karzai Airport a few minutes before midnight in Kabul, marking the end of U.S. military presence in Afghanistan since the invasion following the attacks of September 11, 2001. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

The Biden White House has also emphasized that some level of engagement with the Taliban in necessary to continue the evacuation of American citizens and allies in Afghanistan. (RELATED: Blinken Says US Gave Americans In Afghanistan ‘Every Opportunity’ To Leave)

“There’s no rush to recognition from the United States or any country we’ve spoken with around the world.  It will be very dependent on their behavior and whether they deliver on what the expectations are of the global community,” Psaki told reporters Wednesday.

Wiegand also called for an assessment of “what went wrong” in the 20-year occupation of Afghanistan by the West, with an emphasis on the withdrawal. Republicans in Congress have also called for a separate investigation, though the Biden administration insists that only a “hotwash” review of events is necessary.

“We have to make an assessment of the reasons why such a meltdown was possible,” Wiegand said. “We have to learn lessons for similar situations, and this will be an assessment which is starting now.”

Formerly an online tech and science reporter at The Sun Online, Ashley stepped up to the mantle of technology reporter at the Daily Telegraph late last year. She writes about everything from drones, web security and cryptocurrency to social media apps, like Facebook and Spotify, and technology brands including Apple and Toshiba.

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