Afghanistan: Raab questioned over evacuation deadline extension

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Mr Coyle ridiculed Mr Raab for the Conservative Government’s infamous tagline as he set about questioning what Global Britain really means going forward. Mr Raab however hit back suggesting that despite the failure in Afghanistan and a growing rift of relations between the USA and Britain, it does not mean Britain cannot be an open, outward, and internationalist nation which he claimed Global Britain is all about. His comments come as Mr Raab faces questions from the Foreign Affairs Committee over the Government’s handling of the withdrawal from Afghanistan.

Mr Coyle asked: “We describe the US as our closest ally but they didn’t talk to you about the airport and they refused a British request for extension in Kabul.

“In March, the Government was talking about an alternative alliance to extend time if needed for the evacuation.

“Instead 9,000 were left behind because no alliance was formed.

“Why is global Britain so isolated compared to the Great Britain under Margaret Thatcher or Tony Blair?”

The Foreign Secretary hit back slamming: “Neil, I don’t think we were alone in seeing what flexibility there was in trying to extend the window with the United States! The UK was not alone in pressing those issues.

“The reality is…. What we have got to do is face the new reality. I thought there was too much wishful thinking about the consensus in US politics across the isles.”

Mr Raab then addressed the concept of the Global Britain tagline bing challenge by the events in Afghanistan insisting that the Government still believe in being an “open, outward, internationalist country.”

And I think there is a much bigger question around nation-building in such inhospitable climates.

More to follow…

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