World is ‘a more anxious place’ since Taliban’s return to power – Defence Secretary

16 August 2021, 08:45

Ben Wallace has said the world is "a more anxious place" as the situation in Afghanistan worsens
Ben Wallace has said the world is "a more anxious place" as the situation in Afghanistan worsens. Picture: Alamy

By Daisy Stephens

Defence Secretary Ben Wallace has said the world is "a more anxious place" since the Taliban's return to power.

Speaking to LBC’s Nick Ferrari, he said the world was “more anxious” and “more unstable” after the Taliban took the capital Kabul.

“I think… the world is a more anxious place, more unstable, and I think that is true,” said Me Wallace, when asked by Nick Ferrari whether the return of the Taliban to power made the world a more dangerous place.

"And I think another site of a superpower effectively having to leave, that doesn’t do the world any good at all."

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He also said that an unstable Afghanistan was “not just a local problem”.

"Afghanistan is partly what it is over the last thousand years because of its location, it’s strategic location,” he said.

“A failing or a threatening, weakened Afghanistan is not going to be good for global security.”

The Taliban has declared “war is over” as insurgents took control of Kabul.

Mr Wallace said British and US forces, as well as forces from other nations, are continuing to fly people out of Kabul airport, while viral footage of people climbing onto planes had been taken from the civilian side of the airport.

Mr Wallace appeared to get emotional over the evacuation of British and Afghan nationals, admitting “some people won’t get back”.

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When asked why he seemed to feel it so personally, Mr Wallace said it was "because I'm a soldier."

"It's sad and the west has done what it's done and we have to do our very best to get people out and stand by our obligations."