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Merkel warns of crisis if Afghans fleeing Taliban not supported

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German Chancellor Angela Merkel holds a protective mask during a news conference on the current developments in Afghanistan, at the Chancellery in Berlin, Germany August 16, 2021 Odd Andersen/Pool via REUTERS

BERLIN, Aug 16 (Reuters) - Germany and other western countries should provide aid to countries neighbouring Afghanistan to help them deal with an influx of Afghans fleeing the Taliban or risk a repeat of the 2015 migrant crisis, Chancellor Angela Merkel said on Monday.

"We need to make sure that the many people who have big worries and concerns even though they have not worked with German institutions have a secure stay in countries neighbouring Afghanistan," Merkel said during a news conference. "We should not repeat the mistake of the past when we did not give enough funds to UNHCR and other aid programmes and people left Jordan and Lebanon toward Europe."

Reporting by Thomas Escritt and Joseph Nasr, Editing by Franklin Paul

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