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Taliban regime fit for international recognition: says envoy

Sardar Shakeeb Tells Webinar There Is Lot Of Propaganda Against Them Regarding Women’s Rights

The Taliban representative is pictured during their visit to China. PHOTO COURTESY: Twitter/@NafeesM02352820

KARACHI: The Taliban government representative in Pakistan said on Wednesday, the regime in Kabul had “all the requisites for its recognition” by the international community but warned that there was a lot of negative propaganda against them regarding people’s rights.

Speaking at a Webinar organised by the Karachi Council on Foreign Relations (KCFR), Sardar Ahmed Khan Shakeeb said that the use of Afghan territory against Pakistan or any other country would never be allowed at any cost.

“The Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan possesses all the requisites for its recognition by the international community for a fresh start in the region and internationally,” Shakeeb told the webinar. “Afghan territory will never be allowed to be used by any other country against Pakistan or any other country.”

At the onset of his speech, Shakeeb thanked the KCFR for inviting him to address their members through the webinar. He said that Afghanistan had a rich culture and was full of natural resources, adding: “As a nation, Afghanistan is trying to help themselves, and develop their own economy.”

About the relations with Pakistan, the Taliban representative expressed satisfaction that that trade through Pakistan had increased significantly since the Taliban government come into power. Pakistan, he added, had ever been supportive, especially after the withdrawal of the US troops,” he added.

He thanked Prime Minister Imran Khan for granting Rs5 billion aid to Afghanistan on humanitarian grounds and expressed his gratitude to the charitable institutions in Pakistan for their help towards the people of Afghanistan.

He pointed out that through the Organisation of Islamic Conference Council of Foreign Ministers (OIC-CFM) the humanitarian aid had been promised to Afghanistan. He thanked all the countries, specifically Pakistan, who had come forward to help them.

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When asked about the border fencing and Durand Line – the international border between Pakistan and Afghanistan, Shakeeb said it was a minor issue and was under discussion between the two governments. The issue, he added, should be resolved amicably with talks with locals on both sides of the border areas.

About the Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP), the Taliban representative said that it was not in the interest of Afghanistan that the outfit should operate from his country. The Taliban “will not allow to any country or organisation to use Afghan territory against any a third country,” he added.

When asked about women’s right to education and jobs, as promised in the Doha declaration, Shakeeb replied that they were committed to permit in accordance with Islamic laws. However, he added that there was “a lot of negative propaganda against them” in this respect.

About the calls for forming an inclusive government, he said that thousands of previous government employees were still working in the country and added that “if their leadership which was just a few – perhaps 30 to 40 persons – who could join us whenever they wanted to”.

Shakeeb said that the Taliban would like to have positive economic relations with all the countries in the region, including India. He added that their relations with China and the Central Asian States were also “good and improving”.

The webinar was chaired by Ikram Sehgal and moderated by Dr Huma Baqai.