afghanistan: Top UN official lauds India for holding dialogue on Afghanistan | India News

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UNITED NATIONS: The recent regional security conference on Afghanistan hosted by India shows how strongly regional countries are stepping up at this critical time to underline the need for stability in the war-torn nation as well as the urgent requirement to combat transnational terrorism, UN Secretary-General’s Special Representative for Afghanistan has said.
Last week, India hosted the Delhi Regional Security Dialogue on Afghanistan that was attended by security czars of Russia, Iran, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan.
At the regional dialogue, National Security Advisors (NSAs) of the countries called for providing humanitarian aid to Afghanistan in an unimpeded, direct and assured manner. Pakistan has not allowed transit facilities to send aid to Afghanistan.
“Regional countries have created or continued various important formats of support. Both the Moscow format meetings and the so-called “Troika plus”, involving China, Pakistan, Russia, and the United States, have continued to meet,” Deborah Lyons, who is also head of the United Nations Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA) said on Wednesday.
“India also recently hosted a conference of some regional countries at the National Security Advisor level. All indications of how strongly the regional countries are stepping up at this critical time,” she said in her briefing to the Security Council on the situation in Afghanistan.
She also said there is an urgent need to combat illegal-drug trafficking and transnational terrorism.
“All of these formats rightly stress the need for stability in Afghanistan as well as the urgent requirement to combat illegal drug-trafficking and transnational terrorism.
“Regional countries, like the rest of the international community, have called for a more inclusive government in Afghanistan as well as the need for girls’ education, women returning to work, respect for human rights and the rights of minorities. On these issues there is a strong regional and international consensus. The world is speaking with one voice to the Taliban on these issues,” she said.
India’s Permanent Representative to the UN Ambassador T S Tirumurti noted that the “Delhi Declaration on Afghanistan” adopted at the Regional Security Dialogue of National Security Advisors reflects the much-needed regional consensus on Afghanistan. “The international community and key stakeholders including from Afghanistan have welcomed the Delhi Declaration on Afghanistan,” he said.
The declaration released at the end of the dialogue had said the NSAs pitched for providing assistance to the Afghan people in an unimpeded, direct and assured manner and that aid should be distributed in a “non-discriminatory” manner across all sections of the society.
Lyons said that while the overall security situation has indeed improved, as the conflict has largely ended “we regularly receive credible reports of incidents impacting the right to life and physical integrity of Afghans. These include house searches and extra-judicial killings of former government security personnel and officials.”
She termed it a “negative development”, the Taliban’s “inability” to stem the expansion of the Islamic State in Iraq and in Levant Khorasan Province.
“Once limited to a few provinces and Kabul, ISILKP now seems to be present in nearly all provinces and increasingly active,” Lyons said.
She added that the number of attacks has increased significantly, from last year to this year. In 2020 – 60, so far this year – 334 attacks attributed to ISILKP or claimed by ISILKP.
“ISILKP continues to target the Shia communities. The Taliban insist that they are waging a concerted campaign against ISILKP, but this campaign is worrying in that it appears to rely heavily on extra-judicial detentions and killings of suspected ISILKP members. This is an area deserving more attention from the international community.”
Lyons said her “general impression” is that the Taliban is making “genuine efforts” to present itself as a government.
“These efforts are partly constrained by the lack of resources and capacity, as well as a political ideology that in many ways clashes with contemporary international norms of governance so present in this chamber.
“The Taliban have not yet established full trust with much of the Afghan population or convinced them of their capacity to govern. The movement is also struggling to manage some serious internal divisions,” she said, adding that ultimately, the Taliban must decide on whether to govern according to the needs and the rights of the diverse Afghan population, or whether to rule on the basis of a narrow ideology and an even narrower ethnic base.





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