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Imran Khan calls for urgent action in order to avoid ‘chaos’ in Afghanistan



(Last Updated On: December 19, 2021)

Pakistan’s Prime Minister Imran Khan warned on Sunday the situation in Afghanistan could lead to the biggest “man-made disaster” and that the country is “heading for chaos”.

Addressing delegates attending the 17th Extraordinary Session of the Council of Foreign Ministers of Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) in Islamabad, Khan urged the international community to take immediate action.

“Unless action is taken immediately, Afghanistan is heading for chaos. Any government when it cannot pay salaries to public servants, doctors and nurses is going to collapse. But chaos suits no one. It certainly does not suit the United States,” the prime minister added.

According to Pakistan’s the Tribune, Khan also said under the current circumstances the Afghan government is unable to fight terrorism, and that other countries may face a spillover impact.

Khan added that the situation in Afghanistan was due to years of corrupt government, suspension of foreign aid, freezing of foreign assets and a dysfunctional banking system, which, he said, could lead to the collapse of any state.

He said if the world failed to act timely, it will lead to the “biggest man-made disaster.”

Mechanism proposed

Pakistan also shared a six-point strategy to address Afghanistan’s humanitarian crisis, food security, and economic revival.

The strategy, proposed by Pakistan’s Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi, who chaired the meeting, also proposed creating a mechanism within the OIC countries for sustainable humanitarian and financial support to the Afghanistan government.

According to Qureshi, the gathering of OIC leaders at short notice reaffirmed their commitment to addressing the humanitarian situation in Afghanistan.

Twenty foreign ministers and 10 deputy foreign ministers from across the Muslim world attended Sunday’s session. In total however, 70 delegates participated at the meeting, which was convened by Saudi Arabia and hosted by Pakistan.

Secretary-General of the OIC Hissein Brahim Taha also delivered a speech and said: “We urge the Member States and OIC institutions to provide humanitarian assistance through the OIC Mission in Kabul.”

He also called on all Afghan parties to “put the interests of their people first, protect their lives, keep away from violence and bring lasting peace in fulfilment of their aspirations and hopes for stability, decent living and prosperity”.

Taha said the OIC calls for promoting “the role of the OIC Mission in Kabul, providing it with financial, human and logistical resources to enable it to deliver its full responsibility of coordinating humanitarian and development aid operations for the Afghan people.

US Special Representative for Afghanistan Thomas West also confirmed his attendance in a tweet and said the meeting was a “timely” initiative.

West said the US is following a “clear-eyed policy” with the Islamic Emirate and that the people of Afghanistan remain the focus of the US. “While we continue clear-eyed diplomacy with the Taliban (IEA) – on human rights, terrorism, and educational access, among many other issues – the Afghan people will remain at the center of our considerations,” he said.

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UN emphasizes the importance of aid for Afghanistan



(Last Updated On: January 28, 2023)

The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees says that the distribution of cash aid to the needy is very important during this year’s extremely harsh winter.

The spokesperson of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees in Afghanistan Caroline Gluck says that in this cold winter, it is very important to distribute cash aid to the needy in Afghanistan.

Gluck, who visited Bamyan province recently, says that Afghanistan has faced one of the worst winters in many years and the needs of the people are very high.

She said the distribution of cash will help people sort out their needs during the cold weather.

The United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs estimates that in 2023, the number of people in need in Afghanistan will reach more than 28 million.

Weather reports have put the minimum temperatures in a number of provinces across the country over the past three weeks at between minus 16 degrees Celsius and minus 30 degrees Celsius.

This record-cold winter has left well over 150 people and an estimated 200,000 livestock dead this month.

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UN deputy chief hopeful the IEA will lift restrictions on women



(Last Updated On: January 28, 2023)

Amina Mohammad, Deputy Secretary-General of the United Nations, has said that after meeting with some Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan (IEA) officials she is hopeful that authorities could ease restrictions on women and girls.

In an interview with CNN, Mohammad, who visited Afghanistan earlier this month, was asked if she had any hope about IEA lifting restrictions on women and girls.

She replied: “Yes, I do. It was tough going in. But I feel now it is doable, looking at all the players and seeing some fissures within the Taliban (IEA), I think this is possible. We also had a few exceptions since then. So, yes there is hope.”

Amina said that there are differences of opinions within IEA in terms of carrying of edicts coming from Kandahar.

“I don’t think there is any change from their consolidation around that power base, but there is, in terms of carrying out some of these edicts, differences of opinions,” she said.

“I think in our visit, the recognition mattered. It was very clear that the humanitarian response that the international community was giving was really important. So we have some leverage and I think that is what we are trying to see, what is state of play in reality on ground,” Amina said.

Sima Bahous, the executive director of UN Women, said that when she asked IEA officials about the “further notice” in their decrees, they replied: “We need to build infrastructure, we need to build schools, we need to train the teachers, we need to change the curriculum for it to become less Western or actually not Western at all but Islamic and according to Sharia of what they believe they should learn.

“They believe women should only learn certain things about the Sharia and how to serve their husbands, families and their little community where they live,” she said.

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IEA welcomes World Bank report, urges resumption of incomplete projects



(Last Updated On: January 28, 2023)

The Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan (IEA) on Saturday welcomed the World Bank’s report issued this week and in turn called on the institution to resume incomplete projects that it had been working on in the country prior to the collapse of the former government.

The Office of Deputy Prime Minister for Economic Affairs said in a statement that it welcomes all the “positive points based on objective facts” in the report, which was a clear indication of Afghanistan’s actual economic development and mobility.

“The Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan believes that if the current restrictions on Afghanistan’s banking sector are lifted and the frozen assets are released, the economic situation of the country will take faster steps towards improvement and stability, and the burden on the international community will be lessened,” the statement read.

Earlier this week the World Bank reported that the price of food and fuel in Afghanistan has decreased, the value of the Afghan currency has remained stable against foreign currencies, there has been a significant increase in exports, and the salaries of government employees have been paid on time. In addition, the report noted that national revenues had also increased.

The IEA also called on all international organizations to raise awareness of the real situation in Afghanistan by pointing out the advancements made in Afghanistan, particularly in the economic sphere.

The statement called on international aid agencies and organizations to finance development initiatives in Afghanistan that will lower unemployment and improve the country’s economic situation.

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