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Britain shakes hands with the Taliban: Boris Johnson’s man in Afghanistan sits down with tyrants

Boris Johnson’s envoy met with the Taliban in Afghanistan today as part of an effort to prevent the country from becoming ‘an incubator for terrorism.’

Sir Simon Gass, the Prime Minister’s High Representative for Afghan Transition, met with terror chiefs in Kabul – the first summit since British forces evacuated in August.

Mr Johnson has faced down fury from Tory backbenchers over the decision to meet with the Taliban, who have executed dissidents, tortured prisoners and forced women into hiding since seizing power from the US-backed government.

Sir Simon met with fearsome Islamist tyrants, including the de-facto leader Abdul Ghani Baradar, known as ‘Baradar the Butcher’, deputy prime minister Abdul-Salam Hanafi and foreign minister Amir Khan Muttaqi. 

Sir Simon Gass, the Prime Minister’s High Representative for Afghan Transition, met with terror chiefs in Kabul – the first summit since British forces evacuated in August (pictured: shaking hands with the Taliban foreign minister Amir Khan Muttaqi on Tuesday)

The meeting with the Taliban is the first since British troops evacuated at the end of August amid chaos at the airport that saw more than 190 people in an ISIS suicide bombing (pictured: people on the runway amid the chaos at the end of August)

The meeting with the Taliban is the first since British troops evacuated at the end of August amid chaos at the airport that saw more than 190 people in an ISIS suicide bombing (pictured: people on the runway amid the chaos at the end of August)

Taliban fighters armed to the teeth patrol through downtown Kabul as a child sits on a bicycle on Sunday

Taliban fighters armed to the teeth patrol through downtown Kabul as a child sits on a bicycle on Sunday

An ISIS fighter with an AK-47 backed by a comrade in a machine gun-rigged truck stands guard in Kabul on October 3

An ISIS fighter with an AK-47 backed by a comrade in a machine gun-rigged truck stands guard in Kabul on October 3

He was joined in Kabul by the the Charge d’Affaires of the UK Mission to Afghanistan in Doha Dr Martin Longden. 

A Government spokesman said: ‘Sir Simon and Dr Longden discussed how the UK could help Afghanistan to address the humanitarian crisis, the importance of preventing the country from becoming an incubator for terrorism, and the need for continued safe passage for those who want to leave the country.

‘They also raised the treatment of minorities and the rights of women and girls.

‘The Government continues to do all it can to ensure safe passage for those who wish to leave and is committed to supporting the people of Afghanistan.’

A statement on Twitter which appeared to be from a Taliban foreign affairs spokesman said: ‘The meeting focused on detailed discussions about reviving diplomatic relations between both countries, assurance of security by IEA (Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan) for all citizens entering legally, and humanitarian assistance by UK for the Afghans.’

Abdul Qahar Balkhi said the UK delegation had said Mr Johnson was ‘seeking to build relations with IEA while taking into account prevailing circumstances’ while the Afghan side said the UK ‘must take positive steps regarding relations and cooperation, and begin a new chapter of constructive relations’.

He said: ‘We expect others to also not work towards weakening our government.’

It comes after Tory MPs last week raised concerns in Parliament that Britain should be wary of placing any trust in the Taliban.

Tory MP Tom Tugenhadt, a former Army officer who chairs the Commons foreign affairs committee, said the terrorists were fronting ‘a slick PR operation masking a vicious death cult.’

He said it was ‘absolutely clear’ that Taliban fighters were already rounding up and killing Afghans who worked with the West in cities including Kabul, Kandahar and Lashkar Gah.

Mr Tugendhat said it was also evident that girls were being ‘denied education’ by the fanatics and women were being sent home from their jobs.

Fellow Tory Nus Ghani, who is working to get persecuted female MPs out of Afghanistan, said it was clear women would suffer under Taliban rule.

‘I do not believe the Taliban have changed,’ she added.

The Taliban has been in control in Afghanistan since the fall of the western-backed government in August.

It comes as Defence Secretary Ben Wallace said the UK military withdrawal from Afghanistan showed the connection of global events, providing opportunities for China and Islamist terrorists.

Tory MP Tom Tugendhat (pictured) last week said the Taliban was fronting 'a slick PR operation masking a vicious death cult'

Tory MP Tom Tugendhat (pictured) last week said the Taliban was fronting ‘a slick PR operation masking a vicious death cult’

Mr Wallace told a fringe event at the Conservative Party conference in Manchester: ‘It is all interconnected and Afghanistan matters.

‘Who popped up immediately as the US and Nato were leaving, but China, offering to invest in Afghanistan?

‘That was about securing land routes to ports such as Karachi and also into Pakistan.

‘It is all connected. The ripples from Afghanistan will be felt by al-Shabaab in Somalia, and of course al-Shabaab pose a threat to British interests in Kenya and to our friends in Kenya.

‘The ripples of another superpower being portrayed as defeated by Islamic terrorism will be felt across the world.’

Read more at DailyMail.co.uk