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The Taliban’s Neighbors Fear Afghanistan’s ‘Boiling Pot’ Of Terrorism

Foreign Policy

The Taliban’s Neighbors Fear Afghanistan’s ‘Boiling Pot’ Of Terrorism

A three-day conference in Uzbekistan has united the region, worried about the guerrillas in their midst.

By Lynne O’Donnell

The Taliban’s failure to make the leap from insurgency to governance is coming under scrutiny this week as they meet with representatives of countries that are growing increasingly concerned that after almost year in power, the extremists have again transformed Afghanistan into a global terrorist haven.

The July 25-27 conference in Tashkent, the capital of Uzbekistan, follows the latest report on Afghanistan by the United Nations Security Council, which contains alarming details on the activities of terrorist groups, including al Qaeda, now enjoying the Taliban’s protection in Afghanistan. The report indicated that Afghanistan has essentially reverted to the state it was in before Sept. 11, 2001, when it hosted Osama bin Laden, the leader of al Qaeda, while the group planned the big terrorist attacks on New York and Washington.

Officially, the theme of the conference is “security and economic development,” though sources among participants say the real focus will be on counterterrorism. More than 20 countries and international organizations will attend, including Iran, Pakistan, China, and the Central Asian states. The United States, Russia, and India are also set to attend, as are U.N. delegates.

This week’s gathering to discuss Afghanistan’s descent into rising lawlessness and corruption and sinking human rights will be the first for the Taliban as participants. They shouldn’t expect diplomatic recognition, as they are still widely seen as illegitimate. The European Union’s ambassador to Afghanistan, Andreas Von Brandt, says there is a general consensus on nonrecognition and an emphasis on helping the people, not the regime.

Full story https://foreignpolicy.com/2022/07/26/taliban-afghanistan-terrorism-regional-security/

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