The Taliban have publicly threatened Afghan security guards working for the soon-to-be-closed Australian embassy and posted photos of them online, warning that they would be targeted for cooperation with foreign governments.
The Australian government announced this week that it was Closing its embassy in Kabul, Citing “a growing uncertain security environment” and its diplomats saying “in the light of the impending international military withdrawal from Afghanistan” will not be safe.
The Afghan government has contracted Afghan security guards at the Kabul embassy to say their work is highly visible and stands outside the embassy compound – aimed at retaliating against the Taliban – and many say they are not safe inside. Afghanistan.
The Taliban has openly stated that anyone working for a foreign government or army is a traitor or enemy and will be targeted.
The U.S. military says it is working “rapidly” to develop a plan to evacuate more than 1,000 interpreters and other staff working with the U.S. military. But other allies have not made such announcements.
The Guardian has seen a number of posts threatening Afghanistan working at the Australian embassy.
One, in which the guards were protesting outside the diplomatic compound this week, wrote in Pashto: “Translators and security guards gathered in front of the Australian embassy in Kabul to take refuge with the Australian government.
“They did not know that one day the doors of the embassy would be closed and they would be accountable to the people.”
A guard said that guards at the embassies of countries with troops in Afghanistan regularly make death threats against the Taliban, who have turned against them, their children and their families.
Previously, security guards employed as “contractors” to provide security to the Australian embassy were not eligible for the Australian Government’s locally employed humanitarian rehabilitation scheme, both of which were open to direct staff.
Security guards were specifically told: “The following Afghan citizens will not be eligible for resettlement under this policy: People who worked with Dfat as employees of a private company as part of their duty.”
However, that advice was changed this week, and the Guardian Australia’s correspondence from the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade stated that “contractors and security personnel may also apply for humanitarian visas for locally employed workers.”
Guards welcome the fact that they are allowed to apply under the scheme, but the processing time has often lasted for more than a year, they fear it will be too late. They say the sudden closure of the embassy exposed them to insurgent violence and left them alone in a country where their lives were in danger.
The guard, who did not want to be named for security reasons, said the guards would be targeted and killed by the Taliban once they were released by foreign troops.
“We are not going out of the house. The children have dropped out of school, risking our lives,” he said.
“We feel good about our work for Australia and we are still proud of Australia. So they will not hold us back. We have worked faithfully and helped them stay safe.[ly]”
“There is a real and current threat to local national staff working for the security of embassy and consular buildings,” said Pat Ryan, a defense contractor for Afghanistan and a supporter of Afghan staff in Australia.
“This threat increases with the withdrawal of coalition forces and our diplomats.”
Former Australian Army captain Jason Scans, who served in Afghanistan, said Australia had a “moral obligation” to depend on a person for 20 years.
He said, “Many veterans of our government will be very sorry to close the embassy, if we leave Afghanistan and those who helped us on the battlefield and join us.”
Dfat did not respond to questions about its proposed security and the rehabilitation of other staff.
The prospects for Afghanistan are bleak after US and coalition forces withdrew in September. A resurgent and enthusiastic Taliban controls the country’s most important strikes, and threatens even more.
“The Taliban can take advantage of the battlefield” and the chances of a peace deal are “low”, a U.S. intelligence report Said.
The chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, General Mark Millie, said this week that the United States was “accelerating” plans to evacuate Afghan civilians serving in the US military before September.
Millie said it was important for the United States to “remain loyal to those who support the war effort … and that we do what is necessary to ensure their safety and expel them if necessary.”
“The plans here are very, very fast evolving, not just interpreters but a lot of other people who have worked with the United States.”
The Australian embassy in Kabul lacks certainty about the near future.
The government announced on Tuesday that the embassy would close on Friday, May 28. But security guards say they are said to be on guard until June 15.