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Pakistan to Rally Muslim Countries to Help Afghanistan | World News

By KATHY GANNON, Associated Press

ISLAMABAD (AP) — Pakistan is rallying Muslim international locations to assist Afghanistan stave off an financial and humanitarian catastrophe whereas additionally cajoling the neighboring nation’s new Taliban rulers to soften their picture overseas.

Several overseas ministers from the 57-member Organization of Islamic Cooperation are assembly in Islamabad on Sunday to discover methods to help Afghanistan whereas navigating the troublesome political realities of its Taliban-run authorities, Pakistan’s high diplomat mentioned Friday.

The new Taliban administration in Kabul has been sanctioned by the worldwide neighborhood, reeling from the collapse of the Afghan army and the Western-backed authorities within the face of the insurgents’ takeover in mid-August.

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The OIC assembly is an engagement that doesn’t represent an official recognition of the Taliban regime, mentioned Pakistan’s Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi.

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He mentioned the message to the gathering on Sunday is: “Please do not abandon Afghanistan. Please engage. We are speaking for the people of Afghanistan. We’re not speaking of a particular group. We are talking about the people of Afghanistan.”

Qureshi mentioned main powers — together with the United States, Russia, China and the European Union — will ship their particular representatives on Afghanistan to the one-day summit. Afghanistan’s Taliban-appointed Foreign Minister Amir Khan Muttaqi can even attend the convention.

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Afghanistan is dealing with a looming financial meltdown and humanitarian disaster within the aftermath of the Taliban takeover. Billions of {dollars}’ price of the nation’s property overseas, largely within the U.S., have been frozen and worldwide funding to the nation has ceased.

The world can be ready earlier than extending any formal recognition to the brand new rulers in Kabul, cautious the Taliban might impose a equally harsh regime as once they have been in energy 20 years in the past — regardless of their assurances to the opposite.

In an interview with The Associated Press final week, Muttaqi mentioned that Afghanistan’s new rulers have been dedicated to the training of women and girls within the workforce.

Yet 4 months into Taliban rule, ladies will not be allowed to attend highschool in most provinces and although ladies have returned to their jobs in a lot of the well being care sector, many feminine civil servants have been barred from coming to work.

However, safety has improved beneath the Taliban, with help organizations ready to journey to most components of Afghanistan, together with areas that for years have been off-limits in the course of the battle, mentioned a senior humanitarian official who spoke on situation of anonymity as a result of the official was not licensed to converse publicly on the matter.

The World Health Organization and U.N. businesses have warned of the humanitarian disaster dealing with Afghanistan and its 38 million folks. Hospitals are desperately wanting medicines, up to 95% of all households face meals shortages, the poverty stage is hovering towards 90% and the afghani, the nationwide foreign money, is in free fall.

Pakistan has been on the forefront in urgent for world engagement in Afghanistan. Qureshi mentioned Friday he has warned in talks with many overseas ministers — together with with U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken in Washington — {that a} whole collapse in Afghanistan will damage efforts to combat terrorism and set off an enormous exodus from the nation.

Refugees will develop into financial migrants, he added, which means they’d not need to keep in neighboring international locations of Pakistan and Iran, however will attempt to attain Europe and North America.

Qureshi additionally warned that if Afghans are left with out assist, militant teams equivalent to al-Qaida and the regional Islamic State affiliate will regroup and flourish amid the chaos.

The OIC has leverage due to its nature as an Islamic group and Qureshi expressed hope the summit can even be a chance for the world’s Muslim nations to press upon the Taliban the crucial of permitting ladies to attend faculty in any respect ranges and for ladies to return to their jobs in full.

Michael Kugelman, deputy director of the Asia Program on the Washington-based Wilson middle, mentioned OIC nations might do extra, suggesting they work via their non secular students and have them work together immediately with the Taliban.

For now, it will be troublesome for the West to interact with the Taliban, Kugelman mentioned, including that such an interplay can be tantamount to admitting defeat within the 20-year battle.

For the Taliban, it will be the “final satisfaction of being able to engage … from the standpoint of victor,” he mentioned.

“The Taliban defeated the West … their highly effective militaries and brought on them to endure via a chaotic and humiliating ultimate withdrawal,” he mentioned. “For the West to flip round and bury the hatchet with the Taliban, this might quantity to a legitimization of its defeat.”

Copyright 2021 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This materials might not be printed, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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