No decision from UNSC on travel exemptions: Faiq

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The meeting of the UN Security Council held on Monday to discuss extending travel exemptions for some of the Islamic Emirate officials came to nothing, Nasir Ahmad Faiq, the head of Afghanistan’s Permanent Mission to the UN, told TOLOnews.

According to an AFP report, Members of the United Nations Security Council remained divided on Monday (Aug 22) over whether to exempt some of Afghanistan’s Islamic Emirate officials from a travel ban, diplomatic sources said. Several Western countries would like to further reduce the list, according to diplomatic sources.

China and Russia, however, supported a regular extension of the exemptions list, AFP said.

“These exemptions are still just as necessary,” the Chinese presidency of the Security Council said last week, deeming it counterproductive to link human rights to travel issues for Taliban officials. “The Taliban’s travel exemptions will be extended, according to the plan that the United States recently provided. Based on that arrangement, the travel exemption of six members of the Taliban will be extended,” said Sayed Noorullah Raghi, a former diplomat.

The second meeting of the UN Security Council members ended without results, said the AFP. It is not clear when the next UN Security Council meeting will be held regarding the extension of travel exemptions for representatives of the Islamic Emirate. “China and Russia think the exemptions should be extended since the international community needs to engage with the Taliban,” said Sayed Javad Hosseini, a university lecturer.

But Kabul said that the names of the leaders of the Islamic Emirate should be removed from the United Nations blacklist based on the Doha Agreement.

“The actions that are currently being taken just widen the gap and serve no side’s interests. We urge that these problems be resolved through dialogue,” said Bilal Karimi, deputy spokesman of the Islamic Emirate. Meanwhile, the Afghan women’s coalition has asked the UN Security Council to cancel the leaders of the Islamic Emirate’s travel rights due to violations of human rights, particularly women’s rights in Afghanistan.

“Based on the peace process, they had their travel restrictions lifted, and I think according to the articles of the Doha Agreement, they are no longer eligible to benefit from an agreement that they themselves did not have any commitment to,” said Shukria Barakzai, a member of the coalition.

The two-month travel exemption time for 13 Islamic Emirate officials ended on Friday night, and it is now unclear what action the UN Security Council will take in this regard.—Tolonews

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