Selin ATAY-TDO- NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg made a statement on the withdrawal from Afghanistan at a joint press conference after meeting with Belgian Prime Minister Alexander De Croo. "No matter what we decide, it will have costs and challenges," Stoltenberg said at a press conference, adding that NATO's decision to leave or remain in Afghanistan should be made by allied countries together.
The NATO Secretary-General stated that the peace process could be compromised if it is decided to leave Afghanistan, the gains made in the fight against terrorism in recent years could be lost, and there is a risk that Afghanistan will become a safe zone for international terrorism again. Stoltenberg also warned that attacks against NATO troops conducting military operations in Afghanistan could increase if a decision is made to remain in Afghanistan.
In his speech, Stoltenberg also conveyed a message to the Taliban and said: “The Taliban must fulfill its commitments to sever ties with international terrorists, especially Al-Qaeda. Violence needs to decrease. We see continued violence against civilians, journalists in Afghanistan,”
Stoltenberg also asked whether pressure on NATO allies to increase defense spending in the United States would wane after Joe Biden came to the presidency. Stoltenberg said NATO's security was strengthened by the juxtaposition of both North America and Europe, noting that the Union remained strong despite its “difficult” negotiations with Donald Trump.