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EDITORIAL: As hunger stalks through Afghanistan and millions of starving Afghans are likely to perish the Taliban leadership has made an impassioned appeal to the United States to release its frozen funds and called on the OIC (Organisation of Islamic Cooperation) to recognise its government. It has sought the world’s mercy and compassion to help the starving millions, as its leaders express their commitment to depart from its previous time in power when female gender was treated as slaves and executions were carried out of so-called sin-committers in front of large crowds in sports stadiums. “We have made progress in administration and in politics … in interaction with the nation and the world. With each passing day we will gain more experience and make more progress,” said Afghan Foreign Minister Amir Khan Muttaqi in an interview with Associated Press. Without naming the extremist entities like IS-K, which has proved its potential to effectively challenge the Taliban government, the minister said making Afghanistan unstable is not in the interest of anyone. Then the Taliban foreign minister had a message for the Americans: “You are a great and big nation and you must have enough patience and have a big heart to dare make policies on Afghanistan based on international rules and regulations and to end the differences and make the distance between us shorter and choose good relations with Afghanistan”. Unfortunately, however, the question whether this is enough on the part of Taliban government to soften the Americans’ heart has no clear answer. But as we think so we should not forget that the Afghans are a fiercely independent people. Since the Taliban government will refuse to be dictated and their policymaking will remain independent it would be a stiff challenge to international community that in spite of that complication it should not look the other way as millions suffer hunger. While Afghanistan needs and dearly deserves humanitarian assistance to save lives it also wants the world to accord it diplomatic recognition. That the present-day Taliban are vastly different from their predecessors is a fact. It is hoped the OIC council of foreign ministers and European Union-United Nations Security Council delegates will give their serious thought to what is possible in the given Afghan conundrum and chalk out a programme to mainstream the Taliban government into international community. It is also hoped that being the most critical get together on the crisis in Afghanistan the OIC conference will come up with a framework and a solution to the Afghan imbroglio.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2021

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