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UN chief calls Afghanistan meet for Security Council permanent five

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(FILES) In this file photo taken on June 24, 2021 Secretary-General of the United Nations Antonio Guterres addresses media representatives as he arrives on the first day of a European Union (EU) summit at The European Council Building in Brussels. – United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres on August 26, 2021 called a meeting of the permanent members of the Security Council to discuss the chaotic situation in Afghanistan, diplomats said. (Photo by JOHN THYS / POOL / AFP)

United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres on Thursday called a meeting of the permanent members of the Security Council to discuss the chaotic situation in Afghanistan, diplomats said.

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Guterres sent letters formally inviting the United States, Britain, France, Russia and China to meet on Monday, the diplomats told AFP.

Some member countries of the so-called P5 had been discussing the possibility of a meeting for a few days, they added.

Russia was supposedly reticent but all of the five are expected to join, one diplomat said.

A spokesperson for Guterres confirmed the meeting, which will not include the current ten non-permanent members of the Security Council.

The full Security Council last met on Afghanistan on August 16, a day after the Taliban swept to power in the country.

Monday’s discussion comes as Britain and France work on a UN resolution on Afghanistan.

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The resolution would require the agreement of all five permanent members, each of which holds veto powers, but a text has not yet been shared, diplomats said.

Guterres ducked a question about what he hoped Monday’s meeting would achieve.

“There are normal meetings that take place in the context of the work of the UN,” he told reporters.

Guterres also condemned Thursday’s bombings at Kabul airport, which killed dozens of Afghans as well as 12 US servicemen and have been claimed by the Islamic State group.

“This incident underscores the volatility of the situation on the ground in Afghanistan but also strengthens our resolve as we continue to deliver urgent assistance across the country in support of the Afghan people,” he said in a statement.

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