It is Latvia's moral responsibility to help those who have assisted Latvian soldiers in Afghanistan - Kols

  • 2021-08-23
  • LETA/TBT Staff

RIGA - Latvia has a moral obligation to support those who have helped the Latvian National Armed Forces (NAF) contingent in Afghanistan, the chairman of the Saeima Foreign Affairs Committee Rihards Kols (National Alliance) told LETA.

According to information received so far, asylum applications are being processed for 15 people and their family members from Afghanistan who have helped Latvian soldiers, Kols said. The head of the Foreign Affairs Committee noted that the applications of these Afghans for asylum will be processed in accordance with the law.

The politician emphasized that bringing these people to Latvia is a difficult task, taking into account the practical challenges on the ground.

Asked about other possible refugees from Afghanistan, Kols emphasized that Latvia is only considering granting asylum to those who provided support to the Latvian NAF.

The politician noted that in a situation when the flow of millions of refugees from Afghanistan is projected, it has been heard from European leaders that the approach of 2014 and 2015, when many refugees and migrants arrived in Europe, cannot be applied. Kols noted that fence sections along the Iranian border are being built by Turkey, and Greece - on the border with Turkey, to reduce illegal human flows.

In Latvia, work on the creation of a fence on the eastern border with Belarus became relevant after the use of the flow of foreigners by Alexander Lukashenko's regime as an instrument of hybrid warfare, noted Kols.

Asked about Latvia's position on the Islamist Taliban, which has taken over much of Afghanistan, Kols explained that the situation is still "absolutely fresh" and stressed that the European Union would have to agree on a common foreign policy. The politician reminded that the EU has identified the Taliban as a terrorist organization.