UN chief urges Afghan Taliban to stop terrorist attacks

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United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres on Monday called on the Afghan Taliban to prevent terrorist organizations from attacking Pakistan or any other neighbouring country from Afghan territory, saying the UN was in discussions with the de facto authorities in this regard.

“We consider that it is absolutely essential for the Taliban not to allow any form of terrorist activity that might have an impact in relation to Pakistan, as in relation to any other country of the region,” the UN chief said in response to a question from a reporter about the stepped-up cross-border terrorist attacks from the Tehreek-i-Taliban (TTP) against Pakistan that have resulted in many casualties.

“There are several clear things that we believe the Taliban must deliver from the point of view of the interests of the international community and from the point of view of the interest of Afghanistan itself,” he said at his year-end press conference.

“One thing is that they must deliver in relation to inclusion in the power structures in Afghanistan,” the secretary-general said, emphasizing that all ethnic groups in Afghanistan should be represented.

“A second aspect is in relation to human rights and particularly women and girls’ rights, the right of women to work, the rights of girls to attend school at all levels without discrimination,” he said.

“And there is another clear ask from the international community, which is for Afghanistan to stop all forms of activity of terrorist organizations from Afghanistan that represent the threat to neighboring countries, including Pakistan, and so we are actively engaged in our discussions with the Taliban de facto authorities in relation to this,” the UN chief added.