The US military has said that it expects to begin receiving new Afghanistan evacuees in the United States next week, as thousands begin to wrap up a three-week pause in Europe and the Middle East to get measles shots.
Afghanistan Taliban Crisis LIVE Updates: Foreign minister S. Jaishankar said that India was not taken into confidence on various aspects of the Doha deal struck between the US and the Taliban last year. He also suggested that there are some aspects relating to the Afghan crisis where the positions of the two countries are not exactly the same.
Meanwhile, evacuation of Afghans to the United States continue. The US military has said that it expects to begin receiving new Afghanistan evacuees in the United States next week, as thousands begin to wrap up a three-week pause in Europe and the Middle East to get measles shots. There are about 14,000 Afghans overseas that are expected to come to the US.
Here are more updates:
India, US on same page on many issues relating to Afghanistan: Jaishankar
India was not taken into confidence on various aspects of the Doha deal struck between the US and the Taliban last year, External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar said on Thursday. At the same time, Jaishankar said India and the US are on the same page on many issues relating to the recent developments in Afghanistan including apprehensions about the possible use of Afghan soil for terrorism.
Speaking virtually at the annual leadership summit of the US-India Strategic Partnership Forum (USISPF), he also suggested that there are some aspects relating to the Afghan crisis where the positions of the two countries are not exactly the same.
“I think to some degree, we would all be justified in having levels of concern and to some degree, I think the jury is still out. When I say levels of concern, the commitments which were made by the Taliban at Doha, the US knows it best. We were not taken into confidence on various aspects of that,” he said. (PTI)
Taliban order fighters out of Afghan homes they took over
The Taliban on Thursday ordered their fighters to leave private homes they had taken over during last month’s blitz when the group seized control of Afghanistan, an apparent effort to impose order among Taliban ranks.
The order by Taliban Prime Minister Hasan Akhund followed recent public statements by Taliban officials hinting at plans to improve organisation and marshal fighters. It said Taliban members belonging to the militant group’s defense, interior and intelligence agencies who are living in private homes need to “report back to military bases” across the country. (AP)
Exiled painter depicts ‘slow disappearance’ of Afghan women under Taliban
Murad Sharifi, a refugee from Afghanistan, works at a kebab place and lives in a shelter for the homeless in Budapest’s outskirts. His tiny room is filled with dozens of paintings depicting a colourful but ominous world, of Afghan women clad in long black burqa gowns, surrounded by hostile men.
Sharifi, who fled to Hungary during the 2015 migration wave with tens of thousands of other asylum-seekers, says it is his “obligation” to show the oppression faced by women in his home country, worsening since the Taliban takeover in August. He was drawn to paint “to express women’s pain, and my own feelings”, he said in his bare-walled room, where his canvasses jostle for space with two small beds, two chairs and a table.
Some of his more joyful works depict couples among leafy trees. But most feature starker scenes. In one, which he describes as an illustration of women’s oppression, a woman is shown in a meat grinder with a bearded man squeezing her neck and pushing her down. In another, a woman, with her long hair freely floating, has faces of men running down the side of her green robe and a queue of them eyeing her suspiciously. “In a country where men rule over women, women are deprived of their right to speak freely,” he says. (Reuters)
Afghan girls football team in Portugal gets surprise visit
Girls from the Afghanistan national football team who were recently granted asylum in Portugal have had a surprise visit from the captain of the senior team. Farkhunda Muhtaj, a professional player who from her home in Canada spent weeks helping arrange their recent rescue from Afghanistan, flew into the Portuguese capital, Lisbon, for an emotional reunion with the girls’ team.
After the US withdrawal from Afghanistan, the girls and their families tried to leave their country. They feared how their lives might change under the Taliban — not only because women and girls are not allowed to play sports, but because they were advocates for girls and active members of their communities. What made the rescue mission harder was the size of the group — 80 people, including the 26 youth team members as well as adults and other children, including infants. (AP)
US very honest about its concerns on safe havens with Pakistan says Pentagon
The US has been very honest about its concerns with Pakistan for a long time about the terrorist safe havens along with the border areas of Afghanistan, the Pentagon has said.
Afghanistan and the US have criticised Pakistan in the past for allowing Taliban fighters to cross into Pakistan where they are provided safe havens and also receive medical treatment. “We’ve been very honest about our concerns with Pakistan for a long time, about the safe havens that exist on their side of the border along that spine. And those concerns are still valid today,” Pentagon Press Secretary John Kirby told reporters on Thursday at a news conference. (PTI)
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