UN Security Council calls for cessation of hostilities in Afghanistan, new government

UN Security Council calls for cessation of hostilities in Afghanistan, new government
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The United Nations Security Council is calling for an end to hostilities in Afghanistan and the establishment of an “inclusive” government after the Taliban seized control of the country on Sunday.

“The members of the Security Council called for an immediate cessation of all hostilities and the establishment, through inclusive negotiations, of a new government that is united, inclusive and representative – including with the full, equal and meaningful participation of women,” the Security Council said in a statement Monday.

The group is seeking the “restoration of security, civil and constitutional order,” discussions to find a solution to the “current crisis of authority” in the country and “to arrive at a peaceful settlement through an Afghan-led, Afghan-owned process of national reconciliation.”

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The U.N. body emphasized that the only way a “sustainable end” to the situation in Afghanistan can be reached is through “an inclusive, just, durable and realistic political settlement that upholds human rights, including for women, children and minorities.”

The statement from the Security Council comes a day after the Taliban took control of the capital city of Kabul, the last major city to fall during the swift collapse of Afghan security forces.

Afghan President Ashraf Ghani fled the country on Sunday, later saying that he did so to avoid potential clashes with the Taliban and prevent further bloodshed.

The Taliban's efforts to reclaim territory ramped up as the U.S. moved closer to completing its troop withdrawal, which President BidenJoe BidenManchin lays down demands for child tax credit: report Abrams targets Black churchgoers during campaign stops for McAuliffe in Virginia Pentagon, State Department square off on Afghanistan accountability MORE previously said was set to conclude by the end of this month.

American citizens and Afghans who worked with the U.S. government are now attempting to flee the country.

Videos surfacing online depict a chaotic scene at the Hamid Karzai International Airport in Kabul, where U.S. forces are working to evacuate personnel. Images show Afghan citizens storming the tarmac to jump on flights leaving the country, with some trying to latch on to the outside of moving planes.

The Pentagon announced on Monday that it was sending an additional 1,000 U.S. troops to Afghanistan to help secure the airport. All incoming and outgoing flights have been paused until the location is secure.

The Security Council also addressed reports of international law and human rights violations in communities across Afghanistan, writing that there is an “urgent and imperative need to bring the perpetrators to justice.”

The members called for “strengthened efforts to provide humanitarian assistance to Afghanistan,” and for all parties to allow U.N. humanitarian agencies and other groups to provide assistance in the country immediately, “including across conflict lines, to ensure that humanitarian assistance reaches all those in need.”