February 26, 2020

Senator Hassan on Fox News Discusses Possible U.S.-Taliban Peace Deal, Importance of Ensuring Afghanistan Does Not Return to Being a Safe Haven for Terrorists

To watch the senator’s full interview on Fox News, click HERE.

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Maggie Hassan, a member of the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, went on Fox News yesterday to discuss the possible peace deal between the United States and the Taliban and its impact on counterterrorism efforts in Afghanistan.

 

"What's really important – and what we should be looking at – is that Afghanistan not return to being the safe haven that it was before 9/11 for terrorists. We need to keep our country safe from terrorism, that's why we're over there,” Senator Hassan said.

 

The senator also talked about her recent trip to Afghanistan and the status of Afghanistan’s military forces, “I went to Camp Morehead and Camp Vance [and] saw the important work that our troops are doing to train up Afghan Special Forces for instance. And also heard directly from some of our special forces about their work against ISIS in Afghanistan. So it's going to be critical that it not return to a safe haven for terrorists, but also that the Afghan government develop its own competency in fighting terrorism so that we know that it can't be used again as a base for attacks against us. ”

 

On the peace deal between the United States and the Taliban, Senator Hassan said, “First of all, we can't trust the Taliban. We know that. So we are going to have to have oversight and accountability and enforcement mechanisms in this agreement. We do have a very tenuous political situation in Afghanistan, so this is going to be delicate and that's why it's going to be important to get details about this agreement, see what kind of enforcement provisions are in it and make sure that we either have a partnership, for instance, with UN peacekeepers or are our own presence there to make sure the agreement is adhered to.”

 

The senator was also asked about a briefing she attended on the coronavirus earlier that day and discussed the United States’ response to the growing epidemic, “It is good to see the Administration come forward with a request for some additional funds to help us get prepared for the coronavirus here at home. But most of us think there is a lot more to do and this is not a partisan issue obviously. Our job is to protect American lives."

 

Earlier this month, Senator Hassan participated in a Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee roundtable where she heard from former Commissioner of the Food and Drug Administration, Scott Gottlieb, M.D., and the former Director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Julie L. Gerberding, M.D., MPH about how the government can better respond to this expanding public health emergency. The senator has also attended a number of briefings with senior officials from the Department of Health and Human Services, the Department of Homeland Security, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. As a member of the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions Committee, Senator Hassan joined a number of colleagues in sending a letter to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services requesting updates on the Administration’s response to the coronavirus outbreak. The Senator also joined the New Hampshire delegation in calling on President Trump to increase federal funding to respond to the coronavirus in his budget proposal for fiscal year 2021.

 

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