A group of Republican senators are urging the Biden administration to identify the Taliban as a terrorist organization and treat “them as such to the maximum extent of the law.”
Sens. Joni Ernst (R-Iowa), Tommy Tuberville (R-Ala.), Rick Scott (R-Fla.), and Dan Sullivan (R-Alaska.) penned a letter to the Biden administration expressing concern over the Taliban’s control over Afghanistan.
“Since reestablishing control of Afghanistan, the Taliban resumed the same murderous and oppressive habits that characterized their leadership tenure prior to the arrival of U.S. forces in 2001. Even as the administration
concluded the withdrawal of U.S. and allied forces from Afghanistan, we saw public attacks on individuals, beatings of women and girls, and search teams actively pursuing allies and partners,” the letter reads.
The senators explained one of their biggest concerns is “that among those beaten and chased by Taliban forces were American citizens and their families still living in Afghanistan. This is in addition to the horrific and deadly attacks on our own servicemembers at Hamid Karzai International Airport on August 26, 2021.”
The Republicans also noted the group now controls “advanced military equipment intended for use by the Afghan National Defense and Security Forces.”
The letter goes on to recognize the appointment of Sirajuddin Haqqani, a terrorist known and wanted by the FBI for the murder of Americans.
“Given their history of supporting terror attacks on the United States, their brutal style of governance, their continued display of atrocities against Americans and our allies, and now, their enhanced military capability, the current version of the Taliban government presents a significant threat to the United States. Further, the Taliban display the will and the means to attack Americans and American interests,” the senators wrote.
They claimed the Taliban meets the criteria necessary to designate them a terrorist organization.
“We believe the Taliban easily meets all three criteria and urge you to consider designating the Taliban as a foreign terrorist organization and treating them as such to the maximum extent of the law,” the Republicans argued.
“There is no doubt that a Taliban-controlled Afghanistan poses a direct threat to our national security interests and that of our allies and partners both in the Middle East and in Central Asia,” Rubio told the outlet.
He continued, “Following the Biden Administration’s disastrous military withdrawal from Afghanistan, the country is already becoming a safe haven for terrorists who hate America. Unfortunately, there is no reason to think President Biden will treat the Taliban like the terrorists they are.”
Last week, the Taliban announced a new government for Afghanistan.