EU talks up support for Afghanistan as security declines

Sweden's Foreign Minister Ann Linde speaks with the media as she arrives for a meeting of EU foreign ministers at the European Council building in Brussels, Monday, May 10, 2021. EU Foreign Affairs Ministers meet in Brussels to discuss current affairs, tensions with Russia, the Western Balkans, transatlantic relations and Belarus. (AP Photo/Olivier Matthys, Pool) © Provided by Associated Press Sweden's Foreign Minister Ann Linde speaks with the media as she arrives for a meeting of EU foreign ministers at the European Council building in Brussels, Monday, May 10, 2021. EU Foreign Affairs Ministers meet in Brussels to discuss current affairs, tensions with Russia, the Western Balkans, transatlantic relations and Belarus. (AP Photo/Olivier Matthys, Pool)

BRUSSELS (AP) — European Union foreign ministers on Monday debated ways to maintain support for Afghanistan’s beleaguered government after a brutal weekend attack on a girls' school underscored deep concern that violence will spread as U.S.-led troops leave the country.

With the departure of foreign troops just a few months away, European governments are still trying to work out what kind of diplomatic presence they will keep in Afghanistan and who will provide security for them. They are particularly reluctant to be perceived as abandoning the country.

Just hours after the Taliban announced a cease-fire for later this week, a bus in southern Zabul province struck a roadside mine on Monday killing 11 people. At least 24 others on the bus were injured, the Interior Ministry said.

On Saturday, a bomb attack on a girls’ school killed up to 60 people, most of them students aged 11-15. The death toll from the three explosions there continues to climb.


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EU talks up support for Afghanistan as security declines