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U.S. imposes wide array of sanctions on Russia for ‘malign’ actions

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(Last Updated On: April 15, 2021)

The United States on Thursday imposed a broad array of sanctions on Russia to punish it for alleged interference in the U.S. election, cyber-hacking, bullying Ukraine and other “malign” acts, Reuters reported.

The measures blacklisted Russian companies, expelled Russian diplomats and placed limits on the Russian sovereign debt market.

According to Reuters, more penalties could come, although Washington did not want to escalate matters, the Biden administration said.

Moscow reacted angrily, saying this dangerously raised the temperature between the two countries. It summoned the U.S. ambassador for what it said would be a tough conversation.

Among the actions, President Joe Biden issued an executive order authorizing the U.S. government to sanction any sector of the Russian economy and used it to restrict Russia’s ability to issue sovereign debt to punish Moscow for interfering in the 2020 U.S. election.

Biden barred U.S. financial institutions from taking part in the primary market for rouble-denominated Russian sovereign bonds from June 14. U.S. banks have been barred from taking part in the primary market for non-rouble sovereign bonds since 2019.

Reuters reported the U.S. Treasury also blacklisted 32 entities and individuals which it said had carried out Russian government-directed attempts to influence the 2020 U.S. presidential election and other “acts of disinformation and interference”.

In concert with the European Union, Britain, Australia and Canada, the Treasury also sanctioned eight individuals associated with Russia’s ongoing occupation and repression in Crimea, which Russia annexed from Ukraine in 2014.

The Kremlin, speaking ahead of the publication of the executive order, said the sanctions would reduce the chances of a summit between Biden and President Vladimir Putin taking place, Reuters reported.

Russia’s foreign ministry spokeswoman said Moscow would respond to the sanctions in the near future.

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Norwegian charities pledge humanitarian assistance during IEA’s visit to Oslo

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(Last Updated On: January 26, 2022)

Representatives of Norwegian charities and organizations met with acting Foreign Minister Amir Khan Muttaqi, during his three-day visit to Oslo, and pledged assistance to Afghanistan in various fields, including health and education.

Foreign Ministry Spokesman Abdul Qahar Balkhi wrote on his Twitter account that the meeting was attended by seven Norwegian charitable organizations and associations.

He said that during the meeting, officials from Norwegian charities pledged humanitarian assistance in various areas, including health, education, agriculture and livestock, and demining.

According to Balkhi, Muttaqi assured the organizations of the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan’s (IEA) full cooperation in the delivery of aid and equitable distribution.

Muttaqi led a 15-member delegation to Norway this week where they met with a broad range of officials and foreign representatives.

In addition to meeting Norwegian officials, the IEA also met with dignitaries from the United States, Canada and the United Kingdom, and with representatives of a number of European countries.

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IEA blames the West for Afghanistan’s humanitarian crisis

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(Last Updated On: January 25, 2022)

Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan (IEA) has said the international community should not sentence the people of Afghanistan to “collective punishment and starvation because they failed in their mission in Afghanistan.”

In an interview with Sky News, Afghan Foreign Ministry Spokesman Abdul Qahar Balkhi blamed the west for the ongoing humanitarian crisis in Afghanistan.

“From our part again if we hadn’t taken the measures that we have taken and mitigated the effects of this humanitarian catastrophe that is taking place here in Afghanistan I think we would have been in a far far worse place at this moment,” Balkhi said.

He also reiterated IEA’s calls for the recognition of the current government in the country.

He stated that the IEA government is a responsible actor, “so the politicizing of recognition is only endangering the lives of the common people.”

Referring to Afghan women’s rights for education, Balkhi stated that girls are attending private institutions, “from primary all the way to university levels they’re open for girls and women.”

“I don’t know what the fear is, I absolutely do not know why, I do not understand any of the fear…. girls not going to school in their personal capacity or due to fear whether rational or irrational is their own personal prerogative.”

“From our side, the policy of the government has been very clear, there are absolutely no restrictions on any girls or women attending schools from primary all the way to higher education,” Balkhi said.

Balkhi, meanwhile, said that the Islamic Emirate forces respect Afghan women and they do not “threaten women ever.”

“Our security [forces] do not approach women specifically because this is an Afghan society we have a lot of respect for women we do not threaten women ever.”

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Former district police chief in Ghor gunned down

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(Last Updated On: January 25, 2022)

Habib-u-Rahman Malikzada, former police chief of Tiora district of Ghor province was gun downed by unknown assailants in western Herat province on Tuesday, relatives of the deceased said.

According to his relatives, Malikzada was shot close to the entrance of his house in PD1 of Herat city on Tuesday morning.

Sabir Herawi, a spokesman for the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan (IEA) Intelligence, has confirmed the incident, stating that the culprits fled the area after attacking Malikzada.

So far, no group or individual has claimed responsibility for the attack.

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