Josep Borrell speaks during a press conference following the informal EU Foreign Ministers meeting, with a main focus on Afghanistan at the EU Delegation on September 20, 2021. LEHTIKUVA / AFP

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EU foreign policy chief Josep Borrell has said that the bloc needs to work towards preventing a new refugee crisis in Europe by averting the economic collapse of Afghanistan.

"We thought we would have an acute [migration] crisis because of Afghanistan, but it has not yet happened. And it will not happen if we prevent the economic collapse of the country. 75 per cent of the Afghan budget comes from foreign transfers. And now they are all frozen," Borrell said in an interview with Spanish newspaper El Pais published on Monday, as quoted by Sputnik news agency.

"Economic collapse can occur. We have to prevent it, without recognizing or supporting the government as such," he added.

The EU politician said that although the bloc cannot give money to Afghanistan directly, since several ministers of the interim government are on the US terrorist list, member states can do so through the UN agencies.

"If we want girls to go to schools, there must be schools first," Borrell said.

He further stressed that the EU is particularly concerned about the issue of Afghan refugees since migration is not only a huge problem for the Union but also one of the biggest dividing forces within the bloc.

Earlier this month, Borrell had said Afghanistan is facing a "serious humanitarian crisis and a socio-economic collapse is looming" that will prove to be dangerous for the region and international security.

"Afghanistan is experiencing a serious humanitarian crisis and a socio-economic collapse is looming, which would be dangerous for Afghans, the region and international security," Borrell wrote in a blog post.

Borrell had said that there are many signs that the situation in Afghanistan is getting worse.

Source: ANI