Rory Stewart: Afghanistan is a betrayal and catastrophic failure

The advance of the Taliban across Afghanistan represents a betrayal and catastrophic failure by the US, UK and Nato, says Rory Stewart, a former UK International Development Secretary.

He told BBC World News that Western involvement in Afghanistan had involved around 2,500 troops supporting Afghan forces and air support. That support had confined the Taliban to the south for the country and the withdrawal of that support was “a betrayal”.

He said: “This is totally heart-breaking and totally unnecessary and there was no reason for us to do this, and by doing this we’ve broken Afghanistan in a matter of weeks.”

Taliban militants have continued their rapid offensive in the country seizing more territory and capturing key cities. The group now controls more than a third of its provincial capitals and most of northern Afghanistan.

Read more: Why is there a war in Afghanistan?

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