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US won’t allow Afghanistan to become a safe haven for terrorism, Biden assures Ghani

US President Joe Biden with Afghanistan President Ashraf Ghani and Chairman of the High Council for National Reconciliation Abdullah Abdullah at the White House

The United States announced Friday that its strong support and partnership with Kabul is designed to prevent Afghanistan from ever again being used as a safe haven for terrorism.

US President Joe Biden met his visiting Afghan counterpart Mohammad Ashraf Ghani and Chairman of the High Council for National Reconciliation Abdullah Abdullah at the White House, amid the fragile security situation in the war-torn nation.

After the meeting, the White House said that it continues to use its full diplomatic, economic, and assistance to support a peaceful and stable Afghanistan.

"Our troops may be leaving but support for Afghanistan is not ending in terms of support and maintenance of helping maintain their military as well as economic and political support. Afghans are going to have to decide their future, senseless violence has to stop," said Biden.

The leaders discussed in detail the US support, including through security assistance to the Afghan National Defense and Security Forces, development and humanitarian assistance to support the Afghan people, and diplomatic engagement in support of peace.

In continuation with its security assistance, the US Department of Defence’s Afghanistan Security Forces Fund (ASFF) will provide financial support to the Afghan National Army, Afghan National Police, Afghan Air Force and the Afghan Special Security Forces, including the Special Mission Wing.  

"We are entering into a new chapter of our relationship where the partnership with the US would not be military, but comprehensive, regarding our mutual interest. And we're very encouraged and satisfied that this partnership is taking place," said Ghani.

As a part of the humanitarian assistance, the US will donate three million doses of Johnson and Johnson vaccine to the people of Afghanistan through COVAX. The United States Agency for International Development (USAID) has also ordered over 300 oxygen cylinders and several months’ worth of ventilator consumables to be shipped to Afghanistan.  Additionally, USAID plans to install oxygen plants in four hospitals that will serve smaller facilities in the surrounding areas. The UN World Food Program (WFP) will also address the food and nutrition needs of approximately 1.2 million Covid-impacted vulnerable people in Afghanistan.

The US had recently announced $266 million in new humanitarian assistance to address the pressing needs of an estimated 18 million people in Afghanistan, including more than 4.8 million internally displaced Afghans. This funding will provide lifesaving protection, shelter, livelihood opportunities, essential health care, emergency food aid, water, sanitation, and hygiene services to respond to the needs generated by the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic.  

The US said that it will encourage its partners to continue their security and development assistance, including through the Afghan National Army Trust Fund (ANATF), Law and Order Trust Fund for Afghanistan (LOTFA), and the Afghanistan Reconstruction Trust Fund (ARTF).  

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