US Secretary of State Antony Blinken revealed his last call with former Afghan president Ashraf Ghani, saying that he was prepared to fight till the death and the United States did not know of any plans of him fleeing the war-torn country with “tonnes of cash.”
“We certainly did nothing to facilitate it [Ghani’s departure from Kabul],” Blinken said in an interview with ToloNews. “What I do know, is that he left the country and again in a very short period of time the security forces and its institutions collapsed and so did the government.”
To a question about recognising the Taliban government or working with them, the US top official said that if the future government of Afghanistan is able to uphold the basic rights of people, the basic human aspiration, then “that’s a government that we can work with, if it doesn’t, we won’t”.
Blinken said that the focus of the US right now is on working with the international community to set clear expectations for the government that emerges in Afghanistan, and to communicate those expectations to the government.
He put the blame on the Afghanistan government for what happened in the country in the 100 days preceding August 15, saying many soldiers fought bravely, but as an institution, the army collapsed.
“I have to say the so many Afghans in the security forces acted with incredible courage and bravery and tremendous sacrifice. So many lost. But as an institution, it collapsed.
And the government, of course, the government fled ultimately. All of that happened in a very very short period of time,” he said.—Agencies