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Afghanistan, EU Delegations Hold Second Joint Committee Talks in Kabul

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(Last Updated On: October 24, 2022)

Afghanistan and Europe Union delegations under EU-Afghanistan Cooperation Agreement for Partnership and Development hold second joint committee talks in Kabul on 14 May 2019 and discussed the upcoming election and peace process among other issues, the EU Delegation to Afghanistan said in a statement.

According to a statement released on Tuesday, the Afghan delegation was led by Mohammad Qayoumi, Acting Minister of Finance and EU delegation led by Gunnar Wiegand, Managing Director for Asia and Pacific in the European External Action Service.

The Joint Committee oversees the implementation of the Cooperation Agreement for Partnership and Development, signed by the EU and Afghanistan in February 2017 to underline their mutual commitment to deeper relations through a comprehensive partnership, the statement said.

The Committee was preceded by two EU-Afghan working groups last week: the Special Working Group on Economic and Social Development and the Working Group on Human Rights, Good Governance and Migration.

The Committee reviewed the domestic situation in Afghanistan and in the EU, as well as regional and international developments, the statement said.

The EU and Afghanistan discussed in particular development cooperation, trade, investment, good governance, human rights, humanitarian issues, and migration, the statement noted.

The two sides also discussed electoral processes and the upcoming presidential elections, which, they agreed, are essential to strengthen Afghanistan’s democracy and stability, the statement underscored.

The Joint Committee acknowledged the current peace momentum for Afghanistan, stressing the strong will of the Afghan people for a peace settlement that not only ends the fighting but also preserves the political, economic and social achievements of the last 18 years, in particular regarding the rights of women, children and minorities.

The Committee also discussed concrete steps to enhance EU-Afghanistan long-term cooperation in line with the EU Strategy on connecting Europe and Asia.

The first Joint Committee was held in Brussels in February 2018.

The next Joint Committee meeting is expected to take place in Brussels

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Continued enforcement of travel ban on senior IEA officials is ‘unjust’

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(Last Updated On: December 4, 2022)

The Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan (IEA) describes the international community’s continued travel ban against senior officials as “a cruel and unjust act”.

Bilal Karimi, deputy spokesman of the IEA, says the problems in the country are the result of unfair sanctions imposed by the United States and the international community against the new government of Afghanistan and emphasized that if the world intends to interact with the Islamic Emirate, it should lift all sanctions.

Three months ago, an exemption on the travel ban against 13 senior IEA officials ended, however, the UN Security Council has still not extended it. This has prevented the officials from leaving the country.

“Political isolation had no results before, and it will not have any results now; the Afghan people and us want good relations with countries based on mutual respect,” said Karimi.

When the travel ban exemption expired, the UN Security Council held two meetings in order to decide on whether to continue with the exemption but security council members failed to reach a decision at either of the meetings.

The international community has stood by calls for the formation of an inclusive government, the upholding of human rights and the removal of terrorist threats from Afghanistan as its basic conditions for the recognition of the Islamic Emirate and the end of sanctions.

The Islamic Emirate, however, emphasizes that it has met all conditions for recognition.

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Hamid Karzai left country out of necessity: IEA

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(Last Updated On: December 4, 2022)

Former Afghan president Hamid Karzai left the country out of necessity, deputy spokesman of the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan (IEA), said on Sunday.

Karzai left on Saturday for the United Arab Emirates on his first trip out of the country since the IEA takeover in August last year.

“A necessity was created for him and he left,” Bilal Karimi said.

Karzai is expected to travel to Germany from the UAE. Omar Zakhilwal, a former finance minister, who accompanied him on the flight to the UAE said they will soon return to Afghanistan.
Karzai left the country on the same day Defense Minister Mullah Mohammad Yaqoob Mujahid headed to the UAE. IEA says the trips are not connected.

Experts meanwhile say allowing Karzai to travel abroad increases the level of trust between politicians and the IEA.

Karzai was among only a few former senior government officials who remained in the country after the IEA takeover.

While Abdullah Abdullah, former reconciliation council chief, has had couple of foreign trips, Karzai was reportedly facing travel restrictions.

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Six injured in Saturday’s blast in Jalalabad city

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(Last Updated On: December 4, 2022)

Local officials have confirmed that six people were wounded in an explosion on Saturday in Nangarhar’s Jalalabad city.

This is in addition to the major losses to shops in the area that sustained serious damage.

One of the damaged shops was that of Gul Charan – the city’s only Sikh resident.

According to local officials, the incident is being investigated. The blast reportedly occurred in District 1, in Jalalabad city.

The security officials of Jalalabad meanwhile say the explosion was caused by an IED embedded in a flowerpot.

The residents of the city have called on the Islamic Emirate to prevent such events in the future.

So far, no group or individual has claimed responsibility for the explosion.

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