Afghanistan this week

16 to 22 January 2023

Amina Mohammed and the UN delegation visited Afghanistan

UN deputy chief: the Taliban told me it was “haram for me to sit in a room with them”

Speaking to Al Jazeera following her trip to Afghanistan, the UN Deputy Secretary-General, Amina Mohammed, said that she went to Afghanistan to amplify the voices of Afghan women to the Taliban and that she was ” very focused on getting those messages across.” Despite being told by some of the group’s leaders that it was “haram” for her to be in a room with her.

Former Afghan army soldier fears deportation from the US

Former Afghan soldier fears deportation after crossing US-Mexico border

Abdul Wasi Safi fled Afghanistan after the Taliban’s return to power in August 2021 and made it to Brazil, from where he headed for the US to seek asylum.

Zalmay Khalilzad: The Taliban should listen to Iranian cleric on women’s rights

Veteran US diplomat, Zalmay Khalilzad, has called on the Taliban to listen to the Iranian cleric, Abdolhamid Ismaeelzahi, who, in a Friday sermon, preached that men and women had equal rights to education. A critic of the Iranian government, Abdolhamid Ismaeelzahi is a Baluch Sunni cleric, who in August 2021, congratulated the Taliban’s return to power as a victory achieved with the “help of God.”

Deputy UN chief leaves Afghanistan empty handed

The UN Deputy Secretary-General, Amina Mohammed, ended her four-day trip to Afghanistan without gaining concessions from the Taliban on lifting restrictions on women girls’ rights. Accompanied by the head of UN Women, Sima Bahous, the UN delegation met with senior Taliban officials in Kabul and Kandahar.

UN says sorry for the Taliban flag photo pose

The UN has apologised for its security personnel in Kabul posing for photographs under a Taliban flag. Stéphane Dujarric, a spokesperson for the UN General-Secretary, António Guterres, said the photos had been “a mistake.”

forgotten promises to the people of Afghanistan

Opinion: We have forgotten the promises we made to our friends and allies in Afghanistan

By James Snell

The defeated allies who fought in and abandoned Afghanistan made a lot of promises to Afghans which they did not keep. Over twenty years many of them related to the shape of Afghan society.

Aid Agencies Angry at WFP

Foreign Policy: NGOs angered as WFP considers complying with the Taliban women ban

With over 28 million Afghans depending on aid to survive, and the Taliban leaders not showing any signs of relenting on their punitive decrees, international aid agencies are dismayed at the UN World Food Programme’s (WFP) apparent consideration of complying with the ban and switching into a men-only delivery operation, reports Foreign Policy magazine’s Lynne O’Donnell.

At least 70 drug addicts and rough sleepers have frozen to death in Herat province

Sources in Afghanistan’s western city of Herat have confirmed to KabulNow that at least 70 drug addicts and rough sleepers have frozen to death in the city over the past week.

UN Women meet the Taliban

UN Women chief: “The Taliban told us maybe we shouldn’t be here without our mahram”

Speaking to the BBC’s Lyse Doucet from Afghanistan’s western city of Herat, the Executive Director of UN Women, Sima Bahous, said that the Taliban had inflicted “the gravest women’s rights crisis in the world” on Afghan women.

More than 28 million Afghans depend on aid

More than 28 million Afghans depend on aid to survive, says the UN

The United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (UNOCHA) has warned that 28.3 million Afghans need “life-saving” aid in 2023.

Amina Mohammed meeting Amir Khan Muttaqi

Taliban foreign minister meets UN deputy chief; no promise on lifting women ban

The UN deputy general secretary, Amina Mohammed, met with the Taliban foreign minister, Amir Khan Muttaqi, in Kabul Wednesday.

Freezing temperatures Afghanistan

At least 70 people and 70,000 livestock have frozen to death across Afghanistan

At least 70 people and 70,000 livestock have frozen to death across Afghanistan over the past week, as the country battles through, in some places, double-digit sub-zero temperatures and heavy snowfall.

Qatar frustrated with the Taliban

Qatar FM: the Taliban are “provoking” the world and making “the situation much worse for Afghan people”

The Qatari foreign minister, Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al-Thani, has expressed his country’s frustration at the Taliban’s recent round of restrictions on women and girls’ rights in Afghanistan.

Amina Mohammed visiting Kabul

UN sends senior Muslim women leaders to Kabul in a bid to convince Taliban lift women bans

The UN’s deputy secretary general, Amina Mohammed, is visiting Kabul to meet with Taliban leaders in the hope of convicing them to reverse their decisions on restricting women and girls’ rights.

Taliban flog 9 mine in Kandahar

Taliban flog 9 men in front a packed crowd at a football stadium in Kandahar

The Taliban today publicly flogged 9 men in front of a large crowd inside a football stadium in Kandahar, the group’s birthplace and home to its supreme leader, Mullah Hibatullah Akhundzada.

The IRC and Care International resume operations in Afghanistan.

The IRC and Care International partially resume operations in Afghanistan

The International Rescue Committee (IRC) and Care International have partially resumed their operations in Afghanistan. The two agencies had suspended aid deliveries following the Taliban’s ban on women working as aid workers. The resumptions are limited to the health sector.

Taliban orders travel agencies not to offer services to unaccompanied women

The Taliban’s Vice and Virtue officials in the western province of Herat have ordered travel agents not to provide services to women who are not accompanied by male companion.

British ambassador to Kabul

Former British ambassador to Kabul says there was no Taliban 2.0 and warns of terrorist threats

Former British diplomat, Laurie Bristow, the British ambassador to Kabul at the time of the Taliban’s return to power, has warned of terrorist threats from Afghanistan against the West. Speaking to LBC, a British radio station, Mr Bristow said that before the group’s return, he had seen “no evidence of a reformed Taliban, the so-called Taliban 2.0.

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