In a significant development, two United States lawmakers have asked President Joe Biden to recognise Ex-Afghan Vice-President Amrullah Saleh and anti-Taliban leader Ahmad Massoud as the legitimate government representatives of Afghanistan.
Saleh along with Massoud are the faces of the anti-Taliban resistance front that is operating from the Panjshir valley in Afghanistan.
In a joint statement on Friday (27 August), US Senator Lindsey Graham and Congressman Mike Waltz also asked the Biden administration to recognise both the Afghan leaders as the
"After speaking with Afghan Vice President Amrullah Saleh and representatives of Ahmad Massoud, we are calling on the Biden Administration to recognise these leaders as the legitimate government representatives of Afghanistan. We ask the Biden administration to recognise that the Afghan Constitution is still intact, and the Afghan Taliban takeover is illegal,"the two US lawmakers said in the joint statement.
They further pointed out that the two leaders chose to stay in Afghanistan despite Taliban takeover to "fight for the freedoms of Afghan people and oppose extremism".
It should be noted that Saleh, who also served as the director of the Afghan intelligence agency National Directorate of Security from 2004 to 2010, did not leave the country after Taliban terrorists reached Kabul on 15 August. He is believed to be in the Panjshir Valley (northeast of Kabul), the country's last remaining holdout in the fight against the Taliban.
"They have established a safe haven in the Panjshir valley for Americans left behind, our allies, and those seeking freedom from Afghan Taliban rule," the US lawmakers said.
"They will also be on the front lines in the fight against global Islamic Extremism, which will continue to plot attacks against West in the wake of our withdrawal from the region," they said.
Further, the lawmakers also called on President Biden to designate the Afghan Taliban as a Foreign Terrorist Organisation, and to publicly support Congressional efforts to stand with US allies in the Panjshir valley who, they said, will serve as a "bulwark agains regional terror".
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