Colonel Richard Kemp, who led British forces during the 20-year conflict in Afghanistan, condemns the outrageous demands made by the Taliban regime, responsible for torture and murder
The Taliban government is said to insist that Britain and other nations hand over billions in reparation for the 20 year war in Afghanistan.
Reports in Kabul suggest that demand is imminent – and that the Taliban are confident the UK will buckle.
Noor Mohammad Mutawakel of the current Ministry of Information and Culture said: “Britain is ready to pay us war reparations and we welcome that. Other countries involved in the war must also be willing to pay.”
A Whitehall source said, “We don’t know what they’re going to ask for yet, but it could run into billions for everyone involved. Whether we pay or not is a different matter. “
Afghanistan’s economy is on the brink. GDP is expected to shrink by 10% this year and by 5% in 2022-23.
Many foreign powers freeze overseas assets – the US alone holds £ 7 billion. But the demand for reparations is controversial after the Taliban killed so many allies.
Colonel Richard Kemp, former British Forces Commander in Afghanistan, said: “It is outrage for the terrorist group that has taken over the country to seek redress from countries that fought in Afghanistan to support the legitimate government.
“The British government shouldn’t even think about paying a penny to these bloodthirsty killers. This will be the first of many demands from a regime capable of murdering, torturing and subjugating the population – and ruining the country. “
The news came amid more chaos and bloodshed in Afghanistan. An Islamic State suicide bomber killed at least 50 people in the northern city of Kunduz on Friday.
It has also been revealed that diplomats have met with the Taliban to negotiate safe exit for those with British connections. Some fear the Taliban could use them to up the ante in cash negotiations.
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Colonel Philip Ingram, a former Army Intelligence officer, said: “Britain is in a very difficult position. I don’t think they should pay, but it is important that no country pay as any lack of unity is being exploited. The Taliban are very clever.
“During the evacuation, they kept making statements that they knew Western governments wanted to hear.
“Now aid has been cut and they need cash, they do the same thing with their messages and will probably associate it with people being able to leave.”
The Ministry of Defense refused to comment on the reparations but confirmed that there will be compensation for civilian casualties.
A spokesman said: “Every civil death is a tragedy. The UK tries to minimize the risk through strict targeting processes, but that risk can never be completely eliminated. “
MoD data shows that over 289 deaths were paid between 2006 and 2013.
One family only got £ 104.17. A total of £ 688,000 was paid. One family received £ 586.42 for the death of a ten-year-old boy – less than the £ 662 received by another family for the death of a herd of donkeys.