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Pakistan coaches IEA on winning international recognition

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(Last Updated On: October 22, 2021)

Pakistan Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi gave Afghanistan’s new Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan (IEA) rulers advice Thursday on how to gain international recognition, during a visit to Kabul.

After returning to Islamabad, Qureshi said he advised Islamic Emirate leaders on how to improve their reputation.

“As a neighbour and as a well-wisher and friend, I conveyed to them what sort of steps they could take to enhance their international acceptability,” Qureshi said.

Qureshi, who was joined by Pakistan’s intelligence chief, said he met with the Taliban’s acting prime minister Hasan Akhund and most cabinet members during his brief visit to Kabul on Thursday.

They discussed forming a broader-based government, respecting women’s rights and girls’ need for education and clamping down on international terrorist organisations, Qureshi said.

“If they show fair progress on these issues, the stage for recognition would become easier for them,” he said at a press conference, adding that the “environment is getting better” for recognition.

Afghan Foreign Minister Amir Khan Muttaqi called Qureshi’s visit a “very good interaction” during which trade and reopening of the borders was discussed.

Qureshi is the third foreign minister after those of Qatar and Uzbekistan to visit Afghanistan since the IEA took power in mid-August.

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Turkish, US foreign ministers hold bilaterals on NATO summit sidelines

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(Last Updated On: December 1, 2021)

Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu and his US counterpart Antony Blinken met on the sidelines of NATO summit in Latvian capital Riga on Wednesday Two foreign ministers held bilateral talks at the Atta Center, where the NATO Foreign Ministers summit was underway.

Before the meeting, Cavusoglu said Turkey is in contact with Ukraine and Russia to ease tensions, adding that sanctions on Moscow will not solve the crisis.

Ukrainian and Western officials say Moscow has massed forces on the border with Ukraine, which is battling Russia-backed separatists who control part of its territory to the east, and Kyiv on Wednesday urged NATO to prepare sanctions on Russia.

Cavusoglu and Blinken were expected to discuss latest developments in the region, including Ukraine, Libya and Afghanistan.

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Three Russian aircraft with humanitarian aid arrive in Kabul

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(Last Updated On: December 1, 2021)

Three Russian aircraft landed in Kabul on Wednesday carrying 36 tonnes of humanitarian aid, Russia’s TASS news agency reported.

All three Russian Ilyushin Il-76 aircraft, involved in delivering humanitarian aid to Afghanistan would also evacuate Russian citizens, as well as citizens of the Collective Security Treaty Organization member states, Russia’s Defense Ministry, said in a statement.

“Some three Ilyushin Il-76 strategic airlifters of the Russian Defense Ministry have delivered humanitarian aid to the Kabul airport and are boarding evacuees for departure from Afghanistan,” the statement read.

A total of over 380 Russians, citizens of the CSTO member states (mainly Kyrgyzstan), and Afghan students from Russian universities will fly out on the departing planes, the ministry said.

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India considers re-opening mission in Afghanistan

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(Last Updated On: December 1, 2021)

As countries slowly start reopening their embassies in Kabul, India is also reportedly considering the possibility of re-staffing its mission in Afghanistan.

So far, Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Russia, China, Iran, Pakistan, Qatar, Turkey, Turkmenistan, and Uzbekistan all have a diplomatic presence in the country.

Japan and the EU have also discussed the possibility of returning to Afghanistan.

One senior Indian official told The Hindu on Wednesday that “establishing a presence in Afghanistan has nothing to do with recognition [of the IEA government]. It simply means that you would like to have people on the ground dealing with the new regime, to continue engagement with the people.”

He said the Modi government is not convinced about the need to re-open its mission, but that discussions are continuing on what India’s strategy should be, The Hindu reported.

At present, the Indian Embassy in Kabul, which was evacuated within two days of the IEA talking control, is intact and being guarded by IEA forces.

While calls from within the country to reopen grow, officials told The Hindu that much depends on what India’s other partners and friendly countries choose to do.

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