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Pakistan again claims ‘no evidence’ on abduction of Afghan envoy’s daughter

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(Last Updated On: August 12, 2021)

Pakistan has again said there is no evidence the Afghan ambassador’s daughter was abducted and assaulted in Islamabad last month.

Silsila Alikhil, the 26-year-old daughter of Afghan ambassador Najibullah Alikhil, was allegedly abducted, held for almost five hours and assaulted by unidentified men in Islamabad on July 16.

Two days later, the Afghan government recalled its envoy and senior diplomats from Islamabad and closed its embassy over security concerns.

A four-member team of Afghan investigators arrived in Islamabad on August 1 and wrapped up their probe on Sunday.

They have not yet released details around their findings but the Pakistan foreign ministry said on Wednesday in a statement that their findings do not match the details lodged by the complainant.

Zahid Hafeez Chaudhri, Spokesperson for Pakistan’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs, said in a statement: “We have seen the Afghanistan Ministry of Foreign Affairs’ statement and the complainant’s video.

“It is once again highlighted that the visiting delegation was given a comprehensive briefing on each aspect of the complaint.

“The delegation was informed that the technical data (geo-fencing) matched with the actual movement of complainant on the day contrary to statement of the complainant, which was further confirmed by the statements of the taxi drivers.

“On the basis of the complete investigation, the delegation was informed that the complaint did not corroborate the findings on the ground,” Chaudhri said.

According to him, the Afghan delegation was further requested to facilitate access to the complainant “and the official of the Embassy and phone data, as already requested on 18 July 2021.”

“It is hoped that the Government of Afghanistan would cooperate in expeditious provision of the earlier requested information,” Chaudhri stated.

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WHO calls for $378 million to prevent collapse of health centers

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(Last Updated On: November 30, 2021)

World Health Organization (WHO) officials on Tuesday said they have requested $378 million in aid in order to prevent Afghanistan’s health services from collapsing.

Dr Jamshed Tanoli, WHO’s health sector coordinater, said during a visit to Kandahar province on Monday, along with UN officials, that efforts are underway to keep 2,331 health centers open in Afghanistan.

“We are advocating to convince World Bank, USAID, and the European Union to sustain the funding to ensure that after June 22 we should have a medium to long term strategy to ensure the continuity of health services… also to focus on the COVID-19 as a whole you know the surveillance and laboratories expansion including the treatment centers,,” said Tanoli.

This comes after WHO warned earlier that Afghanistan’s health system is close to collapsing.
“We came here to let you know that we are here to serve the people of Afghanistan,” he said adding that the head of the cluster has requested almost 378 million (dollars).

“So that we are advocating Inshallah to get those funds to ensure the continuity of the services through the NGOs and of course through UN agencies and through all the partners,” said Tanoli.

United Nations Development Program in Afghanistan (UNDP) meanwhile said that the UN will play a greater role in the development of Afghanistan.

“So we are not here to provide the people a package of food, there are other agencies that do that. We are here to see how the people can have enough income to buy their own food,” said Abdullah Al Dardari, head of UNDP in Afghanistan.

The Kandahar governor, on the other hand, said that the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan (IEA) is taking serious measures to provide security for international aid organizations.

“Necessary aid should be delivered for Afghan people. People face a lot of problems. Most people in Dand, Arghistan, Arghandab, Panjwayi and Zhari have been displaced. They lost their houses during US bombardments, now they don’t have any shelter,” said Haji Mohammad Yousuf Wafa, Kandahar’s governor.

This comes as many UN aid agencies warn of an imminent humanitarian catastrophe in Afghanistan.

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Pakistan offers to host ‘urgent’ OIC meeting on Afghanistan

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(Last Updated On: November 30, 2021)

Pakistan on Monday offered to host an Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) foreign ministers meeting on the worsening crisis in Afghanistan that has been called for by Saudi Arabia.

“We have also offered to host the meeting, in Islamabad, on 17 December 2021. We are confident that OIC member states will endorse this offer,” said Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi.

According to a statement issued by Said Arabia’s official news agency SPA, the kingdom said: “Guided by principles of Islamic solidarity with the people of Afghanistan, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, as Chair of the Islamic Summit, and in line with relevant OIC decisions on Afghanistan, called upon the OIC to, urgently, convene an Extraordinary Ministerial Meeting to discuss the humanitarian situation in the country and pathways for an urgent humanitarian response.”

The statement noted that the objectives of the meeting were to explore “means and mechanisms” for aid delivery in coordination with UN agencies, international financial institutions, and the international community for mitigating the humanitarian crisis.

“Impending economic collapse and further deterioration of living conditions will lead to more instability within Afghanistan, which will adversely affect regional and international peace and security,” the kingdom warned.

Pakistan’s Dawn News reported that Qureshi in turn stated that Afghans need assistance “more than ever before”.

“As you are aware, Afghanistan currently faces a serious humanitarian situation — millions of Afghans, including women and children, confront an uncertain future due to shortage of food, medicine and other essential life supplies. The advent of winter has exacerbated the humanitarian crisis,” he said.

The foreign minister urged the OIC to step in to help Afghans. “We should step up our collective efforts to alleviate the humanitarian needs of the Afghan people, provide immediate and sustained support to them, and continue to remain engaged with them for the well-being and prosperity of Afghanistan,” he said.

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Five wounded in Kabul explosion

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(Last Updated On: November 30, 2021)

At least five people including Islamic Emirate (IE) forces were wounded on Monday morning when a roadside mine detonated in PD7 along Darulaman Road.

The explosion took place at about 9.45am local time close to Habibia High School and the target appeared to have been a Hilux vehicle.

According to eyewitnesses, the explosion had been from a roadside mine and caused casualties.

Some eyewitnesses said the Hilux vehicle was being driven by IE forces at the time of the explosion.

An Ariana News reporter in the area said according to eyewitnesses at least five people were wounded in the explosion including IE forces.

Immediately after the explosion, IE forces cordoned off the area, and ambulances were seen arriving at the scene.

So far no group has claimed responsibility for the explosion but ISIS affiliates in Afghanistan (ISIS-K), known locally as Daesh, have been responsible for a number of explosions in Kabul in recent months.

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