Afghanistan
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British MP Tobias Ellwood deletes video ‘lauding’ IEA in Afghanistan

(Last Updated On: July 20, 2023)

British MP Tobias Ellwood has expressed regret and deleted a video on Twitter in which he praised the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan (IEA) for tackling opium and corruption after he faced criticism from fellow MPs.

Ellwood, who is chairman of defense committee in the UK’s parliament, conceded that the “video could be done better.”

The MP told TalkTV: “It’s important to put your hand up and acknowledge errors, however well intentioned.

“I stand up, I speak my mind. I try and find solutions especially on the international stage, and I’m very, very sorry that my reflection of my visit could have been much better worded and have been taken out of context.”

Ellwood added: “I’ll be very clear the last couple of days have probably been the most miserable as a Member of Parliament. I got it wrong.”

Earlier, Mark Francois, another British MP said that his colleague should be “very careful” in expressing his views if he wanted to remain as chair of the committee.

He described the video as “utterly bizarre”, arguing it was “lauding the Taliban’s (IEA) management of the country”.

Ellwood has been urging the British government to reopen its embassy in Kabul so that progressive improvements for girls’ education can be encouraged “incrementally”.

In his video, he claimed that security in Afghanistan had “vastly improved” since the IEA had returned to power, “corruption is down” and the opium trade has “all but disappeared”.

The video was posted also by IEA’s spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid.