Responding to the Afghanistan Crisis
By Layla Moran
Originally published by UK Liberal Democrats
As Liberal Democrats we are hare holding the Government to account for its foreign policy failure over Afghanistan.
20 years on from the US-led invasion, the Taliban have swept into Kabul. They seized power illegitimately without the consent of the Afghan people.
The UK has a moral duty to the people of Afghanistan"
Life under the Taliban regime is one of terror. Women and girls are excluded from education, work and government. Human rights are utterly disregarded with medieval-style punishments used on those who do not conform to Taliban rule.
LGBTQ+ rights are non-existent. Women cannot walk unaccompanied outside the house. Public executions, extrajudicial killings, mysterious disappearances of anyone who speaks against the Taliban will now, once again, be a part of life in Afghanistan.
The UK has a moral duty to the people of Afghanistan - we were there for twenty years. We owe the interpreters, the people who spoke out against the Taliban and the Afghan citizens who provided intelligence and cooperated with UK forces at the risk of their own life.
To not help these people would be utter negligence, and the UK government is failing to do so.
Conference believes that the UK has an obligation to the Afghan people and a responsibility to ensure Afghanistan does not become a breeding ground for international terrorist organisations.
That's why today we voted to:
- Reform refugee policy and grant immediate asylum to Afghan people who need it especially those who are now most at risk due to their cooperation with the UK Government.
- Support local and international gender-based violence services to help Afghan women and girls against an oppressive Taliban rule.
- Take urgent action to stop Afghanistan from becoming a stronghold for terrorist organisations.
- Expand the Armed Forces Covenant to include Afghan soldiers and interpreters who have been evacuated.
- Launch an immediate public inquiry into the Government's involvement in Afghanistan from 2001 to 2021.
We must honour our obligations to the Afghan people after twenty years.