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Taliban leader says in Eid message there ‘will be an Islamic Emirate’

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(Last Updated On: May 9, 2021)

In his annual message ahead of Eid-ul-Fitr, Taliban leader Mawlawi Hibatullah Akhundzada on Sunday called on Afghans to “contribute to the redevelopment of our homeland” in order for there to be a prosperous and progressive country “in the shade of an Islamic system.”

“Let us attain this end by moving away from self-interests and pursuit of power, by making Islamic values and national interests our guiding principles, and by rebuilding as a strong and unified nation through forgiveness, reconciliation and compassion towards one another,” he said.

He also stated that once foreign troops have withdrawn – what he called “the end of occupation” – there shall be an “Afghan-inclusive Islamic system.”

Emphasizing that there would be an Islamic Emirate, he said: “This land is the shared home of all Afghans. We must unite upon Islamic injunctions and protect ourselves from all discord and prejudice.

This comes after the Afghan government, international stakeholders and regional countries have all come out in strong support of maintaining a Republic system.

The Taliban leader however went on to state: “The arms of the Islamic Emirate are wide open for all Afghans that have previously stood in opposition to us.

“We are extending our hand of amnesty and affection, and inviting them to join the path of truth. Stubbornness, vindictiveness and enmity will not amount to anything, but conversely, nations attain honor and glory through tolerance, self-restraint and embracing the truth,” he said.

He also said the group considers the withdrawal of US and NATO forces “a good step and strongly urge that all parts of the Doha agreement be implemented.”

He called for the Doha agreement, signed in February last year between the Taliban and the US, to be fully implemented stating that the deal had been violated by the US.

“Contrary to commitments, the remaining prisoners that were set to be released three months after the launch of negotiations have yet to be freed and the names of officials of the Islamic Emirate yet to be removed from sanctions and rewards lists.”

He said the Taliban “stands ready to protect the independence and sovereignty of its homeland at any cost as it has proven over the past two decades.”

He also said the Taliban has “prioritize negotiations” and has “dispatched a powerful negotiation team for these negotiations to move intra-Afghan negotiations forward.

“However, the Kabul administration has repeatedly tried to sabotage the ongoing political process through various means and continues to engage in such activity,” he said.

He acknowledged there was territory under the control of the Taliban and also said the “Islamic Emirate safeguards and supports all public projects, facilities and infrastructure, and strives to strengthen, grow and advance them.”

Akhundzada said the Taliban supports educational processes and has “assigned a special commission for this purpose”.

According to him, harm to civilians and loss of life in war “is upsetting and regrettable”.

It is distressing that civilians are still being killed and harmed in the raids, blind bombardments, artillery strikes and other attacks of the opposing side, which remains utterly unacceptable by any means.

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UN Security Council to meet over situation in Afghanistan

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(Last Updated On: September 26, 2022)

The United Nations Security Council (UNSC) is scheduled to hold a meeting on Tuesday that will focus on the current situation in Afghanistan.

UNSC members are expected to discuss economic, humanitarian and security concerns.

Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan (IEA) spokesman Bilal Karimi said the IEA welcomed meetings that are held with the aim of cooperating with the government and people of Afghanistan.

He also said that Afghans expect cooperation and that such meetings must be held in accordance with international laws and principles.

However, the IEA still does not have a designated UN representative – one year after taking control of the country.

Instead, Naseer Ahmad Faiq, who assumed leadership of the Afghan mission to the UN in December last year, will address the security council members.

The IEA does not however recognize him as the legitimate envoy to the UN.

In a series of tweets on Monday, Faiq said that he would address the security council meeting and speak on behalf of Afghans.

“On behalf of Afghans, in this important meeting, like always, I would like to raise the voice of my nation,” he said.

In September last year, the IEA asked the UN to accredit Suhail Shaheen, the head of the IEA’s political office in Qatar, as the new ambassador.

But in December, the UN General Assembly passed a resolution in which it indefinitely delayed a decision over the rival claims to the representative seat for Afghanistan.

At the time, the IEA criticized the UN’s failure to decide on this issue, saying it was ignoring the rights of the Afghan people.

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Influential Muslim cleric al-Qaradawi dies at 96

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(Last Updated On: September 26, 2022)

Senior Muslim cleric Sheikh Youssef al-Qaradawi, who was based in Qatar, died on Monday, according to a post on his official Twitter account.

The cleric was an Egyptian Islamic scholar and was chairman of the International Union of Muslim Scholars.

He was best known for his programme al-Sharīʿa wa al-Ḥayāh (“Sharia and Life”), broadcast on Al Jazeera, which has an estimated audience of 40–60 million worldwide.

He is also known for IslamOnline, a website he helped to found in 1997 and for which he served as chief religious scholar.

Al-Qaradawi published more than 120 books, and received eight international prizes for his contributions to Islamic scholarship, and is considered one of the most influential Islamic scholars today.

Al-Qaradawi has long had a prominent role within the intellectual leadership of the Muslim Brotherhood, an Egyptian political organization, although he repeatedly stated that he was no longer a member. He has over the years been critical of Egypt’s President Abdel Fatah al-Sisi.

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Rare 5,000-carat Afghan ruby unveiled in Dubai

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(Last Updated On: September 26, 2022)

A rare 5,000-carat gemstone that went on private display in Dubai has been heralded as a “blessing from heaven” for the residents of the impoverished village in which it was unearthed.

The ruby, which weighs about 1 kilogram, has been hailed as “one of a kind” due to its rich purple coloring and size, the National News reported.

The ruby was discovered in the village of Hyderabad, bordering Iran and Afghanistan and its owner said he hoped the unexpected find would help bring a change of fortune for villagers without access to schools, hospitals or even electricity for some.

The uncut stone could cost at least $10 million in the market, asset manager Patrick Pilati told The National.

“It was an accidental finding from the village called Hyderabad bordering Iran and Afghanistan. There is no mining activity in the village that is under the jurisdiction of Afghanistan,” he said.

The rough stone is deep purple in color and bigger than the palm of a hand.

A certificate of authenticity …by the International Testing Laboratory Gems and Jewellery, in Jaipur, Rajasthan in India, and shown to The National, stated the rough ruby weighs 5,010 carats.

Azad Rokhsati, a gemologist, who was also present at the event, confirmed the size and weight.

“I have never seen anything like this,” he said.

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