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Russia urges calm between ally Tajikistan, Afghanistan

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(Last Updated On: October 1, 2021)

Russia urged Tajikistan and Afghanistan to resolve any dispute in a mutually acceptable manner, saying it had heard reports they were sending troops to their common border, TASS quoted the foreign ministry in Moscow as saying on Thursday (September 30), Reuters reported.

Tajik President Emomali Rakhmon has refused to recognise the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan -appointed cabinet in Kabul and has lashed out at what he describes as violations of human rights in the Taliban’s siege of the Panjshir province where opposition forces held rallies.

The Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan, in turn, has warned Dushanbe against meddling in Afghanistan’s domestic affairs. Ethnic Tajiks make up more than a quarter of Afghanistan’s population, but Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan members predominantly belong to the biggest ethnic group, Pashtuns, Reuters reported.

“We observe with concern the growing tensions in Tajik-Afghan relations amid mutually strong statements by the leadership of the two countries,” TASS quoted ministry spokesman Alexei Zaitsev as saying.

According to the IEA’s own information, tens of thousands of Afghan special forces fighters have been deployed in the Takhar province of northeastern Afghanistan, adjacent to Tajikistan, Zaitsev said.

Russian RIA news news agency cited IEA spokesman Bilal Karimi as denying the movement was building up its forces at the Tajik border, Reuters reported.

Tajikistan’s foreign ministry was not immediately available for comment on the reports.

Tajikistan, which hosts a Russian military base, held military parades in two provinces bordering Afghanistan on Wednesday and Thursday.

U.S. Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin expressed concern on Wednesday for U.S.-trained Afghan pilots and other personnel being held in Tajikistan after they fled across the border from Afghanistan last month as the IEA took power, read the report.

In the war’s final moments, the U.S.-backed Afghan Air Force personnel flew dozens of military aircraft across the Afghan border to Tajikistan and Uzbekistan and were detained there.

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Parwan residents receive much needed food from Bayat Foundation

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(Last Updated On: January 24, 2022)

Hundreds of vulnerable families in Parwan province received much-needed food aid from Afghan charity the Bayat Foundation this week.

The leading charity organization distributed foods parcels – that included flour, cooking oil, and rice – to at-risk families in the province.

Bayat Foundation, so far, has distributed food supplies to thousands of vulnerable people in Logar, Maidan Wardak, Paktika, Herat, Balkh, Nangarhar, Ghazni, Baghlan, Jawzjan, Paktia, Khost, Kunduz, Kandahar, Kunar, Urozgan, Kabul, and Bamiyan provinces.

Haji Mohammad Ismail, Deputy Head of Bayat Foundation, stated: “Today we brought food supplies to Charikar city in Parwan province to distribute to deserving and displaced people.”

“The aid included flour, rice, and oil. We will distribute aid to other provinces soon,” Haji Mohammad Ismail added.

Grateful recipients of the food aid thanked the Bayat Foundation and said they needed the food desperately.

“We are grateful for the much-needed aid [by Bayat Foundation] and call for the continuation of this assistance,” said a resident of Parwan.

Another recipient of the Foundation’s assistance said: “Food prices are high and we face unemployment; therefore, people are suffering financial hardship. This aid will help people.”

Bayat Foundation provides at-risk families with food supplies ahead of and through winter every year. This year, the foundation has ramped up efforts to reach as many desperate families in the country as possible amid the ongoing economic and humanitarian crisis.

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AIB takes delivery of 6th cash aid package from UN

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(Last Updated On: January 24, 2022)

The sixth transfer of humanitarian aid in US dollars from the United Nations has arrived in Afghanistan, Da Afghanistan Bank said on Monday.

The aid, totaling $32 million, was immediately handed over to the Afghanistan International Bank (AIB) on Sunday.

Da Afghanistan Bank, the central bank, has thanked the UN for its assistance in helping to overcome the current economic crisis in the country.

Last month the United Nations announced it would provide $20 million a week in cash as humanitarian aid to Afghanistan by the end of March this year to save the banking system from running out of cash.

The Central Bank of Afghanistan announced four days ago that it had also received the fifth package of $32 million in cash from the United Nations.

After the withdrawal of US troops from Afghanistan, the United States froze nearly $10 billion in foreign reserves belonging to Afghanistan.

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IEA wraps up first day of talks with Norwegian authorities

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(Last Updated On: January 24, 2022)

The Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan (IEA) said on Monday members of their delegation, led by acting Foreign Minister Amir Khan Muttaqi, to Norway met with Norwegian officials on Sunday and discussed issues related to the current situation in the country.

According to a statement issued by the (IEA), “a one-day joint meeting was held between officials of the acting Afghan government and a number of personalities in Oslo, the capital of the Kingdom of Norway”.

“During the meeting, the participants listened patiently to each others’ opinions and exchanged views on the current situation in the country.

“They affirmed that Afghanistan is the shared home of all Afghans, and stressed that all Afghans need to work together for the political, economic and security prosperity of the country.

 “The participants of the meeting recognized that understanding and joint cooperation are the only solutions to all the problems of Afghanistan,” read the statement.

The IEA also said all participants declared such meetings to be in the interest of the country.

Speaking at the end of the first day of talks, IEA delegate Shafiullah Azam told The Associated Press that the meetings with Western officials were “a step to legitimize (the) Afghan government,” adding that “this type of invitation and communication will help (the) European community, (the) U.S. or many other countries to erase the wrong picture of the Afghan government.”

Norway’s Foreign Ministry meanwhile said in a statement last week that Afghan representatives have been invited to Oslo from  23-25 January to meet Norwegian authorities, the international community, and other Afghans.

The statement noted that the meetings do not represent a legitimization or recognition of the IEA “but the de facto authorities must be talked with so that we prevent political situation leading to a worse humanitarian disaster”.

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