Kosovo has agreed to temporarily shelter Afghan refugees fleeing the country for fear of Taliban retaliation.
Kosovo President Vjosa Osmani in a Facebook post on Sunday said that since mid-July, Kosovo has expressed its readiness to do its part to receive Afghan citizens, at the request of US President Joe Biden. “We know very well the impact of being on the run, persecuted and living under the rule of terror. “Kosovo will provide safe haven and protection in close coordination with the United States,” Osmani said. She said Afghan refugees would be verified by US security authorities and added that they would stay in Kosovo until their US immigration visa documentation was processed.
Kosovo Government Chief of Staff Luan Dalipi told the media on Sunday that they have been in contact with the US for the accommodation of Afghan refugees, adding that the operation requires serious logistical, technical, security and social efforts. He said the US remains Kosovo’s main ally and assured citizens that “everything will end well” regarding the accommodation of Afghan refugees.
The US State Department issued a statement saying Kosovo joins the United States and other countries in calling on “all parties to respect and facilitate the safe and orderly departure of foreign nationals and Afghans wishing to leave.” from the country “.
Albanian Prime Minister Rama Rama also said that US President Joe Biden has asked them to assess whether it can serve as a transit country for a number of Afghan refugees, whose final destination is the United States. “We will not say ‘No’, not only because our great allies want us, but because we are Albania,” Rama said on Facebook.
The move by Kosovo and Albanian authorities to provide temporary shelter for fleeing Afghans has been praised by US officials. The US Senate Foreign Relations Committee in a tweet on Sunday welcomed the Albanian government’s decision to provide temporary safe haven to those fleeing Taliban attacks in Afghanistan. The people of Albania are once again showing the world what “BESA” means. You have our respect and gratitude, “the US Senate Committee wrote on Twitter. Former US Secretary of State Madeleine Albright also thanked Albania, Canada, Kosovo and northern Macedonia for providing shelter to Afghan allies, especially women and civil society leaders, saying she hoped and expected others to follow suit./ ibna