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tv   BBC News  BBC News  August 15, 2021 7:00pm-8:01pm BST

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this is bbc news — the headlines: the taliban are back in the capital of afghanistan for the first time in 20 years. the rush to leave kabul as taliban fighters enter the city. president ghani has also fled the country. the taliban say they want to prevent looting in kabul. there are reports of shooting in several parts of the city. the militants have rolled through the entire country in a matter of weeks. in a bbc interview, a spokesman says women will be safe — if they wear the hijab. the policy is that women can have access to education and to work and of course they will observe the hijab, that is it. helicopters ferry us diplomats from their embassy but the us secretary of state says the two decade long us military operation
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in afghanistan was a success. it is up to the afghans themselves, up it is up to the afghans themselves, up to— it is up to the afghans themselves, up to the _ it is up to the afghans themselves, up to the afghan government, the taliban_ up to the afghan government, the taliban to — up to the afghan government, the taliban to decide the way forward for the _ taliban to decide the way forward for the country, including kabul. hello and welcome. taliban forces have entered the afghan capital, making their takeover of the country — 20 years after being ousted from power — all but complete. president ashraf ghani is reported to have fled to tajikistan. the remaining staff of the us embassy have been operating from kabul airport but even there the security situation is said to have been deteriorating. the latest developments come after the taliban's rapid advance in recent days — through provinces across afghanistan.
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here's our diplomatic correspondent, paul adams. as the taliban moves in, the west moves out. american helicopters busy ferrying diplomats to the airport. this end was not the plan. and nor was this — a city in panic. people desperate to eleven. but so —— desperate to eleven. but so —— desperate to eleven. but so —— desperate to leave. so far it is happening without a fight. in a conference call with security officials, the president, ashraf ghani said rioters would be dealt with. but his face may still gaze down on the city, but he has left the country. the government's senior negotiator suggesting he was no longer in charge. negotiator suggesting he was no loner in charae. �* ,, �* longer in charge. translation: the former president _ longer in charge. translation: the former president has _ longer in charge. translation: the former president has left _ former president has left afghanistan, leaving the people to this situation. god will hold him
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accountable and the people will have theirjudgment about him. i wish you patience and strength. more theirjudgment about him. i wish you patience and strength.— patience and strength. more signs of anic at the patience and strength. more signs of panic at the banks, _ patience and strength. more signs of panic at the banks, people _ patience and strength. more signs of panic at the banks, people lining - patience and strength. more signs of panic at the banks, people lining up | panic at the banks, people lining up to take out that you are savings, with thousands of police officers and security officials abandoning their position, the taliban seemed to reverse a pledge not to enter the city. the islamic emirate they said has ordered its forces to enter the city. the citizens of kabul should not fear. ~ ., ., ., ., city. the citizens of kabul should notfear. ~ ., ., ., ., , not fear. we want to avoid bloodshed and destruction _ not fear. we want to avoid bloodshed and destruction of— not fear. we want to avoid bloodshed and destruction of properties - not fear. we want to avoid bloodshed and destruction of properties of - not fear. we want to avoid bloodshed and destruction of properties of the l and destruction of properties of the people and to not to give chance to plunders, looters, who are waiting for such moments to loot, or plunder the properties of the people. but
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the properties of the people. but the streets are full of dread. tens of thousands of civilians displaced by fighting elsewhere living out in the open. telling stories of abuses at the hands of taliban. translation: they came in the night and they were murdering the men and boys, accusing them of being in the army or the police. they were taken from their homes and murdered, because they worked for the government.— because they worked for the government. �* ., , ., government. away from the capital, more success _ government. away from the capital, more success for _ government. away from the capital, more success for the _ government. away from the capital, more success for the taliban, - government. away from the capital, more success for the taliban, taking over the eastern city of jalalabad. the saddest part is i didn't expect this, but now i fight face consequences that i never even dreamed of and i guess that is the price that we pay for trying to make this world a little better.—
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this world a little better. tonight, the mod has _ this world a little better. tonight, the mod has released _ this world a little better. tonight, the mod has released these - this world a little better. tonight, i the mod has released these picture, hundreds of british troops arriving in kabul, with the evacuation of british nationals and eligible afghans under way, they won't be on the ground for long. at the board we are pakistan —— border with pakistan, afghans are leaving and there will be another wave of refugees. let's just show you these pictures. these are the latest scenes from the airport in kabul — you can see crowds outside a plane on the tarmac waiting to leave. hoping to leave. we have also i should tell you had some information from a nato official, who says that all commercial flights have from a nato official, who says that all commercialflights have been all commercial flights have been suspended all commercialflights have been suspended from kabul airport and only military aircraft are allowed to operate. that is the latest statement from nato and those scenes
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showing the desperation of people trying to get out. in the us, the secretary of state anthony blinken was speaking to nbc�*s meet the press programme earlier today. he gave the latest on his government's position. in the us, the secretary of state anthony blinken we can do right by the people who stood with us in afghanistan all these years, including afghans who worked for the embassy, worked for our military. we have a massive effort under way to bring afghans at risk out of the country, if that's what they so desire. and ultimately it is up to the afghans themselves, it is up to the afghan government, the taliban, to decide the way forward for the country, including kabul. we spoke to our north america editor jon sopel who's in washington for reaction of the us secretary of state's comments on the situation. well, i think he was trying to put a brave face on a situation that has turned chaotic, because, look, you can debate the policy about the wisdom or otherwise of pulling american forces out of afghanistan and there are many people, republican and democrat, who think you can'tjust sign a blank cheque forever
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that american forces will keep, prop up a government in afghanistan that doesn't command the huge support of the people and if the taliban come knocking, maybe that is the result. but the way it has unfolded, joe biden seems to have ignored all the warnings he was given by allies, by military top brass, they have drastically overestimated the fighting power of the afghan armed forces, they have underestimated the speed with which the taliban would advance and that leaves you with a situation today of helicopters ferrying diplomats to the airport, the ambassador being ferried to the airport, the flag being lowered over the kabul embassy, diplomats being told to shred documents. not quite the fall of saigon, but not far short. joining me now from kabul is obaidullah baheer — a lecturer at the american university of afghanistan.
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thank you for talking to us. i want to talk about the situation on the ground in a moment, but can i ask you your reaction to whoo the us secretary of state anthony blinken has said to say, calling the mission in afghanistan a success? i has said to say, calling the mission in afghanistan a success?— in afghanistan a success? i would 'ust stare in afghanistan a success? i would just stare at _ in afghanistan a success? i would just stare at that _ in afghanistan a success? i would just stare at that statement - in afghanistan a success? i would just stare at that statement and l just stare at that statement and smile. it is quite ironic, a lot of what happened in afghanistan appeared to be as part of a deal struck between the taliban movement and the united states and the idea here is that they gave up on the afghans, they left them stranded, everything that we saw we could have negotiated a transitional government, we could have done a transfer of power, but none of that happened, because they didn't allow us time. they didn't let us plan for
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it in advance. 50 us time. they didn't let us plan for it in advance.— it in advance. so it was 'ust done too hastily? * it in advance. so it was 'ust done too hastily? yes, _ it in advance. so it was 'ust done too hastily? yes, it_ it in advance. so it wasjust done too hastily? yes, it was. - it in advance. so it wasjust done too hastily? yes, it was. you - it in advance. so it wasjust done too hastily? yes, it was. you arej too hastily? yes, it was. you are kindly speaking _ too hastily? yes, it was. you are kindly speaking to _ too hastily? yes, it was. you are kindly speaking to us _ too hastily? yes, it was. you are kindly speaking to us for- too hastily? yes, it was. you are kindly speaking to us for a - too hastily? yes, it was. you are| kindly speaking to us for a second time, we spoke to you earlier, where you talked about your fears of what was going on, yourfear, you did not want the leave the house, that was a few hours ago, tell us how the last few hours ago, tell us how the last few hours ago, tell us how the last few hours have been. have things changed? few hours have been. have things chanced? n . , , few hours have been. have things chanced? a ., , , ., , changed? actually things have been chanauin changed? actually things have been changing quite _ changed? actually things have been changing quite rapidly. _ changed? actually things have been changing quite rapidly. what - changing quite rapidly. what happened in the morning was that panic—struck, you could see cars stranded on the roads, people stuck on, in traffic for hours and hours, because, again, it was the beginning of the end, the police, the armed forces, they all gave up. the precincts were left empty. it was
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complete lawlessness and people went and started looting under the name of the taliban. there were people that looked like the taliban within the city, but officially there is a policy from the taliban, they weren't allowed to enter the city. and then by the end of the day, we saw the taliban announcing that the vacuum of power, the vacuum of security, created a necessity for them to actually move into the city. they announced a curfew, starting at 9. i was trying to get out a few hours ago to grab a few things and i saw four orfive armoured hours ago to grab a few things and i saw four or five armoured vehicles, one tried to ram into my car and they didn't look like they were government, they didn't look like they were taliban. theyjust looked like people who had grabbed and looted such equipment. so it is quite shocking. one doesn't understand what we could or could not do. so it is a lot of unknowns.
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we will wait for tomorrow morning to find out what happens politically. the president left afghanistan in the worst possible scenario. he didn't even allow time for afghan elite to travel to doha to discuss a transition of power. it is like the rug was swept under the feet of the democratic transfer of power, something that president ashraf ghani kept talking about. he abandoned the nation. he ran away. what is the best that you can hope for out of this situation? previously, we hoped that a transition of power could be something that the west could
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incentivise the taliban into. now there is no reason for the taliban to negotiate much forform there is no reason for the taliban to negotiate much for form a transitional government. there have been conflicting statements. when i was with the in the morning. they said they would create an inclusive government and something that was later cleared on reuters i think that two taliban spokes men said they didn't believe in a transition of power or a transitional government. so we will have to see. there is a committee formed within afghanistan, including hamid karzai, abdullah abdullah and another, they are called the co—ordination committee to discuss what the future government would look like. but we haven't heard from the taliban. rumours would that one leader had landed in kabul. but he has not. we
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will have to see tomorrow as to when the taliban take over all of kabul as to what the next step fr them would be. —— step for them would be. a huge amount of uncertainty and anxiety, what about your own personal situation? what are you going to do. what can you do? again, as i said earlier, _ going to do. what can you do? again, as i said earlier, as _ going to do. what can you do? again, as i said earlier, as unsettling - going to do. what can you do? again, as i said earlier, as unsettling as - as i said earlier, as unsettling as all of this is, i do not want to abandon my country. i want to be here. i want to be able to have this discussion and here's to hoping that the taliban have it within them to have that discussion with academics, with people who represent the public. my friends have been stranded. some of them were trying to rush to the airport, only to realise later that the paths to the airports were closed and the flights were cancelled. others managed to
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get out. some tried to help me get out as well. but i thought others deserved it more and i didn't want the leave, not now and hopefully not ever. so... ithink the leave, not now and hopefully not ever. so... i think this would be a very, very long night for kabul, but we will have wait what happens. you had to take — we will have wait what happens. you had to take the decision to leigh or stay? —— leave or stay? had to take the decision to leigh or stay? -- leave or stay?— had to take the decision to leigh or stay? -- leave or stay? yes, and i'm hoinu stay? -- leave or stay? yes, and i'm honing that— stay? -- leave or stay? yes, and i'm honing that the _ stay? -- leave or stay? yes, and i'm hoping that the taliban _ stay? -- leave or stay? yes, and i'm hoping that the taliban stay - stay? -- leave or stay? yes, and i'm hoping that the taliban stay true - stay? -- leave or stay? yes, and i'm hoping that the taliban stay true to l hoping that the taliban stay true to their statement of tolerating different views of having the capacity to discuss and to change to evolve, to modernize and i think there will be a need for technocrats, even if the taliban don't see it, my students need lecturers like me, other afghans
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need people with talent, with experience, that can help not only run the state, but help society function. and that would mean some people like me sacrificing and staying behind. and then i hope that they see that and let us do our work, let us work for our nation. ok thank you very much. laurel miller is director of international crisis group's asia program, formerly she was the deputy and then acting special representative for afghanistan and pakistan at the us department of state. hello there. your thoughts first of
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all about the situation as it stands? ~ , ., , , ., stands? well, it is obviously an extremely _ stands? well, it is obviously an extremely fluid _ stands? well, it is obviously an extremely fluid situation, - stands? well, it is obviously an extremely fluid situation, as i stands? well, it is obviously an l extremely fluid situation, as your reporting has shown. there are the immediate questions of what is, i don't even think we can say transition to power to the taliban, because there isn't any transition happening, the taking of power by the taliban bgs what is that going tolike like, what will the situation be in the hours and days ahead? as someone, and in this case it can only be the taliban, attempts to ensure some kind of law and order in kabul and takes ensure some kind of law and order in kabuland takes up ensure some kind of law and order in kabul and takes up the seat of government. we are then entering a very uncertain phase and a whole new context in the afghanistan of what is taliban rule in this new situation going to look like? are they going to, what is their political vision going to be, are
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they going to re—establish the emrate as it was in the nineties and bring their emir to kabul, what is their political plan? they haven't said yet and more questions than answers on that front. talk said yet and more questions than answers on that front.— answers on that front. talk us throu~h answers on that front. talk us through us — answers on that front. talk us through us policy _ answers on that front. talk us through us policy in _ answers on that front. talk us through us policy in this - answers on that front. talk us i through us policy in this regard, this rapid withdrawal, president biden has come in for extensive condemnation for having gone about it in this ways, should he have foreseen this would happen? i it in this ways, should he have foreseen this would happen? i think it was pretty — foreseen this would happen? i think it was pretty clear _ foreseen this would happen? i think it was pretty clear that _ foreseen this would happen? i think it was pretty clear that president - it was pretty clear that president biden, given his long—standing views on afghanistan, wanted to end the us military involvement there. so the decision to withdraw is not a surprise. i don't think it really has a lot to do with the agreement that the united states under the trump administration signed with the taliban, that if anything was
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convenient for the biden administration, because it gave them administration, because it gave them a kind of coverfor a administration, because it gave them a kind of cover for a withdrawal decision that they wanted to make, because of how president biden calculates us security interests and doesn't rate afghanistan high on that. once you were going to have that. once you were going to have that decision to withdraw, it was going to happen quickly in any circumstances and really what we are seeing happen right now is a crisis of confidence, a collapse of confidence by afghans, the security forces, the political elite and the population in their own government and their own system being able to endure in the absence of the american presence. you endure in the absence of the american presence.- endure in the absence of the american presence. endure in the absence of the american resence. ., , ., ., american presence. you will be aware that comparisons _ american presence. you will be aware that comparisons are _ american presence. you will be aware that comparisons are being _ american presence. you will be aware that comparisons are being made - american presence. you will be awarej that comparisons are being made with the us withdrawal from vietnam in the us withdrawal from vietnam in the 70s, do you think that is an apt comparison? the
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the 70s, do you think that is an apt comparison?— the 70s, do you think that is an apt comparison? the situations are very different in a — comparison? the situations are very different in a number— comparison? the situations are very different in a number of— comparison? the situations are very different in a number of ways. - comparison? the situations are very different in a number of ways. one | different in a number of ways. one way in which i think you could say it is apt is that there were wrong analysis up to the last moment of how long the existing situation could hold and how much time there would be to execute an evacuation of the embassy. i think it was more acute in the case of vietnam than what we have seen here, but nonetheless that misunderstanding of how rapidly the situation could deteriorate. you can see some parallel there. i think one thing that we do see that has been a kind of false comparison that has been perpetuated and infused american policy was the idea after the soviets withdrew from afghanistan, the afghan government could hold on, because the money from the russians
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kept going for three years, until the soviet union evaporated and the money was cut off. that led some to believe as long as the us and the west are giving money to the ashraf ghani government it could hang on for a period of time. that proved to be a false comparison and a grave miscalculation of its staying power. in terms of agreement signed between president trump and the taliban, the and afghanistan government wasn't part of that, was that a grave mistake?— part of that, was that a grave mistake? ~ ., ,., mistake? the afghan government wasn't art mistake? the afghan government wasn't part of _ mistake? the afghan government wasn't part of it, _ mistake? the afghan government wasn't part of it, because - mistake? the afghan government wasn't part of it, because the - wasn't part of it, because the taliban rejected the idea of negotiating with the afghan government until after it had negotiated with the us. and achieved its no i objective was an american commitment to a time line for withdrawal. it was a calculated risk the united states took that if it
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acceded to taliban demand for getting the foreigners to withdraw and then we will talk to the other afghans, that that concession could open up a window of opportunity for a peace process. it was a calculated risk, but the calculation turned out to be a wrong bgs there wasn't enough of a window of opportunity, probably not enough intent on the alban side and not enough interest on the afghan government's side to convert that opportunity into a real peace process. so in the end it did bolster alban morale and accelerated their legitimacy on the international stage and the us/taliban agreement accelerated the trajectory that was already in play of taliban rising in dpans. afghanistan. 50
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of taliban rising in dpans. afghanistan.— of taliban rising in dpans. afuhanistan. ,, , ,. ., , afghanistan. so the us is scrambling to evacuate its _ afghanistan. so the us is scrambling to evacuate its citizen _ afghanistan. so the us is scrambling to evacuate its citizen and _ afghanistan. so the us is scrambling to evacuate its citizen and the - afghanistan. so the us is scrambling to evacuate its citizen and the us - to evacuate its citizen and the us has put in billions of dollars to shore up afghanistan and build a civic society whashs, what do you make of antony blinken saying the mission has been successful? the biden mission has been successful? tie: biden administration is mission has been successful? ti9: biden administration is lying the emphasis on the successes achieved in terms of counter terrorism and going after al-qaeda, decimating al-qaeda, it is degraded and pointing out that osama bin laden was killed ten years ago. he was it bears mentioning he was killed in pakistan and not afghanistan. there was a second part of the mission from the start and that was regime change. the bush administration decided to go after al-qaeda and the
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terrorists and to eliminate the taliban regime and judged it essential there not be taliban rule in afghanistan any longer. from that, flowed all of the investment you referenced and what is called the nation building mission. that has clearly been a failure. there were gains that were made for afghan people over these years in terms of education, health, women's rights, how long the gains will endure is in question. so there was a two part mission by the united states in afghanistan. counter terrorism, and regime change. the first had some successes, the second distinctly not, because we are back to where we started 20 years ago. good not, because we are back to where we started 20 years ago.— started 20 years ago. good to talk to ou. started 20 years ago. good to talk to you- thank— started 20 years ago. good to talk to you. thank you _ started 20 years ago. good to talk to you. thank you for _ started 20 years ago. good to talk to you. thank you for your - to you. thank you for your assessment.
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with me now is bbcjournalist zarghuna kargar who is from afghanistan and has been speaking to residents in both kabul and jalalabad. what have people been saying to you. there is a total sense of chaos, people are worried, people are scared. i have been speaking mostly with women. they're terrified of what is coming next for them. i was speaking to up ing to one of my friends in kabul. she went to the bank to get some money, she has been trying to leave the city for a while and she wasn't able to leave. she went to the bank and the bank said you can go home, there is no money in the bank. she said when i came out of the bank, the streets were empty and people were getting off the car, running back home. she said she went home and she feels so hopeless. it is heartbreaking to speak to my friends. my friends who have worked so hard in the last 20
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years to progress, to get education, to learn, to help the society and the community, they'rejust, the morale is so low. it is just so sad. and i'm also speaking, have been speaking to mothers of army families. and one mother told me that her son was, who was guarding the jalalabad airport, she can't make contact with him. they are telling him he might be safe. but it is heartbreaking to not know how your child is doing. she said that since this morning, she is hearing planes going over kabul, they live close to the airport, and she felt that everyone is leaving and they're left behind, abandoned. terrible scenes and terrible stories. [30
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left behind, abandoned. terrible scenes and terrible stories. do you think that this — scenes and terrible stories. do you think that this fear _ scenes and terrible stories. do you think that this fear in _ scenes and terrible stories. do you think that this fear in this - scenes and terrible stories. do you think that this fear in this time - scenes and terrible stories. do you think that this fear in this time of l think that this fear in this time of uncertainty, do you think the fear is strongest among women? alert; uncertainty, do you think the fear is strongest among women? very much, women were _ is strongest among women? very much, women were the — is strongest among women? very much, women were the main _ is strongest among women? very much, women were the main victims _ is strongest among women? very much, women were the main victims of- women were the main victims of taliban regime. women were the main victims of the the mujahideen regime. there are so many widows and so many women who worked hard to build a community of educated women, there were so many girls go to school, they don't know what the next minute holds for them. can they go to school tomorrow? they don't know. are they allowed to go to university, they don't know. we hear some women were told to go back from universities by the taliban, where they have taken over. there is a sense of fear and when you see everyone leaving it is just heartbreaking and it is like really scary, i have been there myself when
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in the nineties i was a kid and my father hold on to our home and to what we had and we said it is going to be fine. the mujahideen are coming, but we will fine, there will bejobs and life coming, but we will fine, there will be jobs and life for us. and we saw all his friends leaving. some went to russia. some went to india. we were left behind. sometimes my mother still blames my father for all the suffering we went there, we became displaced two times in afghanistan, and then went to pakistan as refugees. we made it to england. but we were late and when you hold on to things and there are, i speak to so many of my friends, they're in the same position that i was in the nineties as a child and it isjust so was in the nineties as a child and it is just so heartbreaking not to be able to go back to your home. not be able to go back to your home. not be able to go back to your home. not be able to... sleep in your own bed. as a child. and i have been there. and just...
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as a child. and i have been there. andjust... so as a child. and i have been there. and just... so hard to keep hopes high, orto and just... so hard to keep hopes high, or to keep... and just... so hard to keep hopes high, orto keep... to and just... so hard to keep hopes high, or to keep... to keep the momentum of feeling that it is going to be fine. the momentum of feeling that it is going to be fine. , :, :, :_ momentum of feeling that it is going to be fine. , :, :, :, to be fine. the events of today and this art to be fine. the events of today and this part week— to be fine. the events of today and this part week are _ to be fine. the events of today and this part week are stirring - to be fine. the events of today and this part week are stirring up - to be fine. the events of today and this part week are stirring up a - to be fine. the events of today and this part week are stirring up a lot | this part week are stirring up a lot of memories and emotions for you clearly, among the people that you have been talking to, is there any sense, any realistic sense that the taliban might have change d from the regime in the nineties or are people sceptical? regime in the nineties or are people sce tical? , regime in the nineties or are people scetical? , ,: , , sceptical? highly sceptical. it is 'ust like sceptical? highly sceptical. it is just like seeing _ sceptical? highly sceptical. it is just like seeing the _ sceptical? highly sceptical. it is just like seeing the reality - sceptical? highly sceptical. it is just like seeing the reality and l just like seeing the reality and hearing from people, hearing from women in provinces, just a few weeks ago, i spoke to a woman artist in kabul. she said in her province where the taliban has entered, midwives who are essential workforce for looking after mothers and babies, they were not allowed to go
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to work. how can they trust a force like this, that we see example, we hear women being forced to marry and sold and to stop from education. how can they trust? it will be very hard to see the the reality and to see what is coming next that is going to change. how have they changed? in the last few weeks all i have heard from the people i have been speaking to, they say the taliban haven't changed. they're more scary and we feel like they're coming with a same force that they came in the nineties. force that they came in the nineties-— force that they came in the nineties. , :, :, :, :_ nineties. so you feel a long way from afghanistan, _ nineties. so you feel a long way from afghanistan, i _ nineties. so you feel a long way from afghanistan, i should - nineties. so you feel a long way from afghanistan, i should say| from afghanistan, i should say you're speaking to us from the uk, but you are in touch with people there. what are you going to do, are you just going to keep in touch with people and try to reassure them. fits
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people and try to reassure them. as an people and try to reassure them. 93 an afghan woman who has dedicated her life for work of education of girls and women, i will try to help them get out. because i don't know... they feel scared. they feel terrified. they feel that... i will not be able to do what i did. in one familyi not be able to do what i did. in one family i see five young men losing jobs. they were all working for kabul police, for military, you can imagine how the cycle of poverty is coming in. they don't know if they will be allowed to work in the police force again, or will they be able to move freely in kabul. so it is very hard to keep... a feeling apart from what is going on in my country and with my people. thank ou. thank you for talking to us. thank
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you. general sir richard barrons was commander ofjoint forces command for the british military from 2013 until 2016. shejoins us now on bbc news. thank you so much for giving us your time. your assessment of the first of all of what is going on and where we are. ~' of what is going on and where we are. " , of what is going on and where we are, 4' , , of what is going on and where we are. ~ , , : :, are. so, i think it is very clear that the afghan _ are. so, i think it is very clear that the afghan government | are. so, i think it is very clear i that the afghan government we are. so, i think it is very clear - that the afghan government we have supported for 20 years has collapsed. i don't think there will be a transition to some sort of interim government, i think we'll the establishment of a taliban led islamic emirate in the next few days and i think we will then see the taliban allow, and i use that word carefully, allow the west to remove its diplomats and its other entitled personnel and that'll be that. 50. personnel and that'll be that. so, the t-rou personnel and that'll be that. so, the group that — personnel and that'll be that. so, the group that has been got together
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of hammered karzai, abdullah abdullah, you feel they don't really have very much bargaining power? i have very much bargaining power? i don't think they have any cards to play in a situation where the taliban are in kabul, president ashraf ghani has left, the army has collapsed, the police has collapsed, what is there left to discuss? hater what is there left to discuss? how do ou what is there left to discuss? how do you feel _ what is there left to discuss? how do you feel about _ what is there left to discuss? how do you feel about the _ what is there left to discuss? how do you feel about the way that my caddie feel about the policy of withdrawal and secondly the way in which the withdrawal has happened of western forces and the western presence? it western forces and the western resence? , ,:, :, western forces and the western resence? , :, :, , :, presence? it is important to be a little nuanced _ presence? it is important to be a little nuanced about _ presence? it is important to be a little nuanced about this. - presence? it is important to be a little nuanced about this. two i little nuanced about this. two things are clear. first of all, the permission to make sure that the return to terrorism is not imminent. secondly, particularly the american spent a lot of money and effort
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trying to build a more stable and different afghanistan and their effort has failed and in saying that it failed, we now should acknowledge just what a terrible partner we had in the afghan government that has collapsed. it should have tried harder, done better, improved, and it did none of those things. however, we made a commitment to afghanistan. we looked afghans in the eye and we said we are here, we are here to help create a different future with you. and then what feels like at the last minute when the price we were paying in terms of military force and money was small and sustainable, we have pulled it down. and that has caused this whole thing to unravel.— thing to unravel. once the us pulled out, did thing to unravel. once the us pulled out. did the — thing to unravel. once the us pulled out. did the uk _ thing to unravel. once the us pulled out, did the uk and _ thing to unravel. once the us pulled out, did the uk and any _ thing to unravel. once the us pulled out, did the uk and any of— thing to unravel. once the us pulled out, did the uk and any of the i thing to unravel. once the us pulled out, did the uk and any of the other| out, did the uk and any of the other partners have any choice but to pull
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out as well?— partners have any choice but to pull out as well? this is a fundamentally im ortant out as well? this is a fundamentally important question _ out as well? this is a fundamentally important question because - out as well? this is a fundamentally important question because the i out as well? this is a fundamentally important question because the uk| important question because the uk and others, particularly the uk, asked the question with our european allies and nato, well, the americans are leaving, should we take this on? they came to two conclusions. they don't have the capability to do this are certainly not at readiness and secondly there wasn't the political or public will to take it on. the reason i think this is important is, you know, whatever we said about our values and interests in the world, we haven't been able to do anything about this when the americans walked away which is a terrible place to be in the world we are entering, a world led by the rise of china with all the instability of climate change. we have to accept if there is one good thing that comes from this debacle, we have to accept we have to recover the ability to look after our interests when we choose to but we don't have that right now. and, yet, would there be the
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political will, even if we had the ability, to actually maintain a presence there?— presence there? there is no olitical presence there? there is no political will _ presence there? there is no political will to _ presence there? there is no political will to do _ presence there? there is no political will to do more i presence there? there is no political will to do more in i political will to do more in afghanistan, to go back in in any case. that option has closed now. that is because the people of the uk are not in the streets demanding action has been taken despite people like me now feeling the rest of our lives are blighted by what has happened. the point is we need to understand things will happen in future which really do matter to our security and prosperity, and those of our friends, and we will have to stand up for ourselves and we need to recognise if we wanted to we couldn't have done anything and that is not a good place to be. thank couldn't have done anything and that is not a good place to be.— is not a good place to be. thank you ve much is not a good place to be. thank you very much for— is not a good place to be. thank you very much for your _ is not a good place to be. thank you very much for your time, _ is not a good place to be. thank you very much for your time, general i is not a good place to be. thank youj very much for your time, general sir richard barrons, commander ofjoint richard barrons, commander of joint forces richard barrons, commander ofjoint forces command for british military, thank you so much.— let's look now at international reaction to the rapid advance of the taliban.
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my colleague lewis vaughanjonesjoins me. so much has happened today. just run us through some of the developments. i'm going to start in the uk because just a few hours ago, an emergency meeting was called by the government and borisjohnson and the prime minister speaking afterwards giving an admission saying that shortly there will be a new government in kabul and if you take a moment to think about it, imagining british prime minister saying that a couple of weeks ago, a couple of days ago and even perhaps this morning, it is and even perhaps this morning, it is an extraordinary admission and talking about the priority being to stop the country becoming a breeding ground for terror. it is stop the country becoming a breeding ground for terror.— ground for terror. it is clear that there is going — ground for terror. it is clear that there is going to _ ground for terror. it is clear that there is going to be _ ground for terror. it is clear that there is going to be all- ground for terror. it is clear that there is going to be all that i ground for terror. it is clear that there is going to be all that is i there is going to be all that is going — there is going to be all that is going to — there is going to be all that is going to be very shortly a new government in kabul, or a new political— government in kabul, or a new political dispensation, however you want to _ political dispensation, however you want to put it. and i think it is very— want to put it. and i think it is very important that the west
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collectively should work together to -et collectively should work together to get over _ collectively should work together to get over to that new government, be it by the _ get over to that new government, be it by the taliban or anybody else that nobody wants afghanistan once a-ain that nobody wants afghanistan once again to _ that nobody wants afghanistan once again to be a breeding ground for terror~ _ again to be a breeding ground for terror. : ~ , :, terror. and the prime minister also ttivin an terror. and the prime minister also giving an update — terror. and the prime minister also giving an update on _ terror. and the prime minister also giving an update on the _ terror. and the prime minister also giving an update on the situation i terror. and the prime minister also | giving an update on the situation on the ground there, and it is best illustrated if we take a look at some pictures, british troops arriving in kabul, the 16 air assault brigade, the prime minister talking about two priorities in a very difficult situation, difficult as a word he used, but basically talking about a duty to fill obligations to uk nationals there firstly, and to fulfil obligations to those who helped the british efforts, so fulfilling obligations of those who helped the british effort in afghanistan. the prime minister can't have been expecting the speed of developments as they
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panned out. let's take a look at the rest of the world. actually, the increasing focus, the world's attention is kabul airport itself. nato is there. fears for security around the airport for obvious reasons and actually in the last hour or so we are hearing from voters that all commercial flights have been suspended to allow the priority for clearly the military operation, the literary evacuation is going on. you may have seen early on commercialflights is going on. you may have seen early on commercial flights trying to land and turning around. they've been suspended. let's take a look at what the nato secretary general tweeted earlier on. lots of countries now involved in doing just that and we can take a look at france. we have a bit of footage, let's take a look at that.
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the french ambassador, there are no words but it is worth pausing for a beat. this is the helicopter going from the embassy to the airport, france saying it is moving its afghan embassy close to the airport and it'll keep operational fare to help the evacuation of all french citizens there. they will do that via the uae, the united arab emirates which will help quite a few countries with this evacuation, so we will see that in the coming hours. the situation with germany similar, saying they are doing everything they can to enable german citizens and local afghan support staff to leave, just a core embassy staff to leave, just a core embassy staff remaining. a couple of quick comments from a couple of other countries, qatar calling for a peaceful transfer of power, turkey sing their embassy will continue its operation. that is a brief overview of the international reaction. i want to focus just before i go on
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the people of afghanistan because this is talking about international evacuations. a tweet from malala yousafzai, the girls women's advocate, shot by the government in afghanistan. a big job for the international community. to that end, un security council are due to meet on monday morning. council are due to meet on monday mornint. :, , :, :, council are due to meet on monday mornin._ :, , :, :, :, morning. ok, many thanks for that round-u- morning. ok, many thanks for that round-up of— morning. ok, many thanks for that round-up of some _ morning. ok, many thanks for that round-up of some of _ morning. ok, many thanks for that round-up of some of the _ morning. ok, many thanks for that round-up of some of the reaction l morning. ok, many thanks for that| round-up of some of the reaction to round—up of some of the reaction to the situation, thank you. my colleague yalda hakim spoke earlier to taliban spokesman suhail shaheen who is in doha where peace negotiations have been taking place. he said there would be a peaceful transfer of power and that women would be respected.
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their properties, their lives are safe, there will be no restraint on anything. we are the servants of the people and of this country. our leadership had instructed ourforces to remain at the gate of kabul, not to enter the city, we are awaiting a peaceful transfer of power. when you say peaceful transfer of power, what do you mean? what is actually likely to happen? it means that the city and the power should be handed over to the islamic emirate of afghanistan and then we will have an afghan inclusion, islamic government,
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in which all afghans will have participation. when you say participation, do you mean one vote, one person? what do you mean by participation? participation means that we will have, in the government, other afghans, they will be a part in the future government. but it will fall under the umbrella of the government of the taliban? the islamic emirate, as you describe it? yes, there will be, as i said, an afghan inclusion, islamic government. will there be a delegation going to doha tomorrow to meet with mullah baradar? because there are a lot of rumours that he has arrived in kabul and the current president, ashraf ghani has handed power over to him. can you give our viewers some
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clarity on that, please? mullah baradar is here in doha, he has not gone to kabul, these are just rumours. there is also a lot of concern from women in afghanistan, in kabul, they have been writing to me, they have been texting me, they are concerned that you will reimpose the regime of the 90s back in afghanistan, where women could not go to school, where the girls could not go to school, they could not work. can you give us some clarity on what your plans for that? we have taken already many...of the country, and also, many provinces of the country. there are hundreds of schools for girls in the west. there, the girl students are studying. they are there, there is no sanction on them, they are continuing their studies
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and they are going to schools, they were going in the past. in herat, for example, women are telling me that when they arrived at the gates of the university yesterday, taliban fighters told them to leave and that there would be instructions about whether they could attend university or not. that is what the fighters on the ground are telling the women of herat. what i'm telling is the policy, the policy is that women can have access to education and to work and of course, they will observe the hijab, that is it. when you say, the hijab, do you mean a headscarf on the head or a burqa covering theirface? no, burqa is not the only hijab, there are many types. one of them you can change.
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the taliban spokesman in doha speaking to our reporter. now some more breaking news: afghan president, orformer afghan president, ashraf ghani has made his first statement since he left the country today. posting on facebook, mr ghani said he left the country in order to avoid bloodshed, as the taliban entered the presidential palace. he added any clashes between his government and the taliban would endanger millions of kabl residents. millions of kabul residents. mr ghani did not disclose details on his new, current location. that statement just out from the former afghan president. colonel chris kolenda, author of zero—sum victory: what we're getting wrong about war, he led the us troops as commander to fight against the taliban in 2007 and also engaged them in peace talks later.
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thank you forjoining us. just first of all, your reaction to these very fast speed developments we've seen in the last 24—48 hours. first fast speed developments we've seen in the last 24-48 hours.— in the last 24-48 hours. first of all, in the last 24-48 hours. first of all. thank _ in the last 24-48 hours. first of all. thank you — in the last 24-48 hours. first of all, thank you very _ in the last 24-48 hours. first of all, thank you very much - in the last 24-48 hours. first of all, thank you very much for i in the last 24-48 hours. first of. all, thank you very much for having me. i've got a personal reaction and then a policy reaction. my personal reaction, look, it is very upsetting and disappointing. i've got afghan friends who i am messaging back and forth, we are concerned about their safety, their personal safety. they tell me about the unfolding humanitarian crisis, the uncertainty about the future, and all of that is very upsetting. it is also very upsetting to see that 20 years of work with the afghan government comes crashing down like this. from a policy standpoint, i think it is important to focus right now on cause and not blame and there are
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three courses for what we are seeing right now. the first cause is that the afghan soldiers and people no longer believe, lost faith in their leadership, and voted with their feet to accept the taliban. second is the taliban used to the last 18 months very wisely in negotiating all of these surrenders, whereas the afghan government squandered them. third, the united states created and built an afghan security force that was too dependent on america, and thatis was too dependent on america, and that is strategic malpractice. hotter that is strategic malpractice. how much of this _ that is strategic malpractice. how much of this should _ that is strategic malpractice. how much of this should have played a part in the american decision to withdraw its troops? how much of this, with the benefit of hindsight, although, you know, all this has happened so quickly, but how much should this have been taken into account? i should this have been taken into account? ~ :, :, , , :, , account? i think what happened was the taliban were _
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account? i think what happened was the taliban were very _ account? i think what happened was the taliban were very savvy - account? i think what happened was the taliban were very savvy in i account? i think what happened was the taliban were very savvy in using | the taliban were very savvy in using the taliban were very savvy in using the last 17 months to negotiate the surrenders of these various commanders, and district and provincial governors. what we have seen over the last week or so has been to collect these surrenders. it was a very effective campaign. and it doesn't seem that the united states had any inkling of what was going on. and it didn't seem like the afghan government had much inkling of what was going on either, sort of buried its head in the sand. and instead of reinforcing and preparing its defences, it continued to hope the united states would keep their troops in the country. and when president biden made it quite clear and present from beforehand that wasn't going to be the case. you have sat in negotiations. you negotiated with the taliban in the
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past. from their present public pronouncements, do you think they've changed? pronouncements, do you think they've chanted? ~ :, :, ., changed? well, what i am hearing from them. _ changed? well, what i am hearing from them, and _ changed? well, what i am hearing from them, and you _ changed? well, what i am hearing from them, and you just _ changed? well, what i am hearing from them, and you just played i changed? well, what i am hearingl from them, and you just played the interview with their spokesman, is what they've been saying for several years. and, so, now the question is are the taliban going to follow up what they've said in terms of respecting human rights, now they've essentially taken over in afghanistan. they own the humanitarian crisis. and are they going to do to make they've talked about not wanting a monopoly of power, and they've said thatjust now. are they going to follow through on that or are they going to overreach and invite resistance from the afghan population against them? time will tell. but the afghan population against them?
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time will tell.— the afghan population against them? time will tell.— time will tell. but you will be aware of the _ time will tell. but you will be aware of the stories - time will tell. but you will be aware of the stories coming l time will tell. but you will be i aware of the stories coming out of afghanistan of people being executed, of women being taken by taliban members, by taliban fighters, and there does seem to be a big disparity in areas between what is being said by the leadership in doha and what is happening on the ground. in doha and what is happening on the tround. :, �* : ground. you're right. and indiscipline _ ground. you're right. and indiscipline is _ ground. you're right. and indiscipline is one - ground. you're right. and indiscipline is one of- ground. you're right. and indiscipline is one of the l ground. you're right. and i indiscipline is one of the first signs of what i call catastrophic growth. when you grow beyond your ability to manage. time will tell on the veracity of some of the reports on both sides. what i'm hearing on the ground are the taliban in many areas are letting women's clinic stay open but another case that isn't the case. the taliban have a challenge on their hands in terms of
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internal discipline. and whether they are successful in being able to consolidate or invite resistance against them is in many ways going to be determined by the level of discipline they commit to. home to be determined by the level of discipline they commit to. now that a taliban government _ discipline they commit to. now that a taliban government seems i a taliban government seems practically inevitable, what can the international community do, what should its attitude be? i international community do, what should its attitude be?— should its attitude be? i think the best case scenario _ should its attitude be? i think the best case scenario is _ should its attitude be? i think the best case scenario is afghans i should its attitude be? i think the i best case scenario is afghans come to gather and negotiate, work through some sort of political arrangement where everybody is happy. and the united states, united kingdom, the international community should work with whatever government the afghans agreed to to alleviate the afghans agreed to to alleviate the humanitarian crisis and to help afghanistan be successful. one of the things the taliban always said in their statements to us, and we are hearing it in their public
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statements, they want afghanistan to be successful. they want afghanistan to have relations with the outside world. they recognise when they were cut off from the world in the 90s, they were unsuccessful. and, so, they were unsuccessful. and, so, they seem to be at least in their policy statement is aware of not repeating those same failures. another question is will they act on those lessons, and do what they are saying, which is taking care of the afghan people and helping afghanistan to be prosperous? time will tell and the international community needs to be ready to lean in and help afghanistan come out of this humanitarian crisis and at the same time work with the government to ensure there is no terrorist sanctuary emerging, that afghanistan is at peace with itself and its neighbours, that human rights are respected. fithd
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neighbours, that human rights are res-ected. : :, :, :, respected. and the international community _ respected. and the international community is — respected. and the international community is much _ respected. and the international community is much more - respected. and the international community is much more likelyl respected. and the international. community is much more likely to respected. and the international- community is much more likely to do that presumably if the now inevitable handover of power, as it seems, is done without reprisals or without bloodshed.— without bloodshed. that's exactly ri t ht. without bloodshed. that's exactly ritht. it's without bloodshed. that's exactly right- it's going — without bloodshed. that's exactly right. it's going to _ without bloodshed. that's exactly right. it's going to strengthen i without bloodshed. that's exactly right. it's going to strengthen the willingness of the international community to work with whatever government emerges in afghanistan, if it is done without reprisals, and along the lines that their spokesman discussed. if it is a different story, if there are continued reprisals and gross violations of human rights, then the international community's reaction is going to be different. :, ., community's reaction is going to be different. :, ,, , :, , : :, different. thank you very much for our time different. thank you very much for your time colonel— different. thank you very much for your time colonel chris _ different. thank you very much for your time colonel chris kalenda. l i want to show you some film we've had coming in. it is a photograph.
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we believe this to be of the taliban inside the presidential palace in kabul. we know that president ashraf ghani left the country earlier today. he said he left in order to avoid clashes with the taliban that would endanger millions of kabul residents. so, that photograph though we believe to be of taliban members in the presidential palace. let's hear now from unicef�*s chief of field operations. she was talking earlier about his concerns for people in afghanistan. i earlier about his concerns for people in afghanistan. i think we have been quite _ people in afghanistan. i think we have been quite vocal— people in afghanistan. i think we have been quite vocal about i people in afghanistan. i think we have been quite vocal about the | have been quite vocal about the humanitarian concern affecting afghanistan right now. 360,000 people have been pushed out of their homes because of their conflict. and we reported on the number of
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children killed since the beginning of the year and that number is unacceptable, standing at more than 500. at the same time, we have been having discussions and meetings with the taliban leadership in the various towns that are now under their control. the latest engagement we had with them was actually this morning injalalabad, where we discussed especially how unicef will be able to resume their activity, and those activities are life—saving interventions at this stage. this story is moving at such a fast pace — here's a reminder of how this day began and developed so the taliban closed in on kabul this morning — after seizing the eastern city of jalala bad. afghanistan's acting interior minister said they want a peaceful transfer of power to a transitional government. the taliban has told the bbc they want to take power in the next
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few days but will respect the rights of women. roads out of kabul have been packed with people fleeing the taliban. the taliban have captured more territory, including the former us you're watching bbc news. now it's time for a look at the weather. warmth and sunshine is in fairly short supply in the week ahead but whilst there was some rain in the forecast most will be mainly dry but with a north—westerly wind it'll feed in cloud and with the wind it'll feel cooler particularly for the first half of the week. this is the bigger picture at the moment. through sunday, slow moving fronts pushing across the uk bringing cloud, outbreaks of rain into parts of northern england, wales, south—west england and very heavy showers for norhtern scotland and we keep those going through this evening. for others, a glorious sunday with blue skies and sunshine so very much mixed fortunes. this evening, we see those showers continue to slide their way across scotland but much of the rain across england and wales tending
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to ease away with some of those showers moving into north—east england through the early hours so some clearer skies across eastern sides of scotland with temperatures down to 6—7. elsewhere, with the cloud, more like 12—11t. here is how we start the new week. our area of low pressure pushing across scandinavia with high—pressure building from the west, squeezing the isobars and a north—westerly wind so feeling cooler for all of us through monday. quite a lot cloud as well with some showers, most will be dry with the best of sunshine will be across the eastern counties of scotland. the temperatures, we have seen 23—24 in places on sunday, more like 18—20 on monday, and some rain arriving into the west of scotland which will slowly slide across scotland clipping northern ireland into parts of england and down across the east coast as we head through the early hours of tuesday. it is a similar pressure set—up
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on tuesday, this area of low pressure to the east of us, high—pressure to the west maintaining that north—westerly air flow, damp start to the day across parts of east anglia and south—east england with outbreaks of rain which will pull away but in the wake, we are left with cloud with one or two showers and once the morning rain has gone from the east and south—east, many dry if rather cloudy with highs of 16—20. it is a cloudy picture in the week ahead, most will be dry, some small amounts of rain, fairly cool start to the week, turning warmer later but with a chance of showers at the weekend. goodbye.
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this is bbc news, the headlines. the taliban are back in the capital of afghanistan for the first time in 20 years. this picture is believed to be of the taliban inside the presidential palace in kabul. the rush to leave kabul as taliban fighters enter the city. nato says commercial flights are suspended. president ashraf ghani has also fled the country, saying he did it to avoid bloodshed. the taliban say they want to prevent looting in kabul. there are reports of shooting in several parts of the city. the militants have rolled through the entire country in a matter of weeks. in a bbc interview, a spokesman says women will be safe if they wear the hijab.

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