UN to end travel ban exemptions for Taliban

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The United Nations is set to end travel ban exemptions for 13 Taliban officials, pending any deal by Security Council members on a possible extension, diplomats told AFP.

Under a 2011 UN Security Council resolution, 135 Taliban officials are subject to sanctions that include asset freezes and travel bans. But 13 of them were granted exemptions from the travel ban to allow them to meet officials from other countries abroad.

In June, the 15-member UN Security Council’s Afghanistan Sanctions Committee removed two Taliban education ministers from the exemption list over the regime’s curtailment of women’s rights.

At the same time, they renewed the exemption for the others until August 19, plus a further month if no member objected. Ireland objected this week, according to diplomatic sources.

China and Russia have called for an extension, while the United States has sought a reduced list of the officials allowed to travel and the destinations they can travel to.—AFP

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