Canada To Keep Military In Afghanistan Even After US Deadline Get Over: Justin Trudeau

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced on Tuesday that Canada is to keep its military personnel in Afghanistan despite US President Joe Biden's commitment for the August 31 American military deadline in the country. (Phil Noble - WPA Pool/Getty Images)

OTTAWA, Ontario — Justin Trudeau, Prime Minister of Canada, on Aug. 24, announced that Canada is to keep its military personnel in Afghanistan despite US President Joe Biden’s commitment for the Aug. 31 American military deadline in the country.

“Our commitment to Afghanistan doesn’t end when this current phase, this current deadline comes. We will continue to put pressure on the Taliban to allow people to leave the country,” Trudeau said in a statement.

“We’re going to continue to work every single day to get as many people out alongside our allies. The commitment by our fellow G7 nations is clear: we’re all going to work together to save as many people as possible.”

Trudeau’s remarks came after the virtual summit of G7 leaders on Aug. 24, who met to discuss whether an extension of the American military commitment to Afghanistan is needed for evacuating all foreign nationals and vulnerable Afghans who helped the Americans and the allies of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization before the country’s recent fall to the Taliban.

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson called the urgent summit to discuss the evacuation crisis, plot longer-term engagement with Afghanistan’s Taliban leaders, and deal with the humanitarian concern for refugees.

Canada is one of the allied countries taking part in evacuating people from Kabul’s chaotic airport, which American-led forces have secured for the time being.

“Yesterday, a @RCAF_ARC evacuation flight departed Kabul carrying 436 Canadian citizens and Afghan nationals destined for Canada. Hundreds of those passengers have already been transferred to another waiting flight, and they are now en route to Canada,” tweeted Harjit Sajjan, Minister of National Defence of Canada.

“Our @CanadianForces personnel in Kabul are empowered to make operational decisions in the interest of saving lives. I want to thank them for their bravery and courage under difficult conditions. We will continue to be there for Canadians and Afghans who are in harm’s way.”

Before the summit, Trudeau said the return of the Taliban would have to prompt a broader rethinking of Canada’s aid spending in Afghanistan.

“That is something we’re looking at right now, obviously, with the Taliban in control of the country. Our regular aid, investments, and agencies need to be looked at carefully to make sure we are not supporting, indirectly, the Taliban,” Trudeau said.

He said that they affirm their steadfast commitment to the people of Afghanistan, including through a renewed humanitarian effort on the international community.

“To this end, we support the United Nations in its work to coordinate an immediate international humanitarian response in the region, including to ensure unimpeded humanitarian access to Afghanistan, and we will collectively contribute to that response,” said Trudeau.

(With inputs from ANI)

Edited by Saptak Datta and Ritaban Misra



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