Taliban confront economy in turmoil, humanitarian crisis

Taliban confront economy in turmoil, humanitarian crisis

Afghan families gather to receive food from an Islamabad-based Christian company on the borders of Chaman, a border town in the Pakistan’s southwestern Baluchistan province, on Aug. 31.

The Associated Press

Afghanistan’s new Taliban rulers struggled to keep the country operating on Wednesday after the final withdrawal of U.S. forces, with foreign donors alarmed about an impending humanitarian crisis.

Two weeks since the Taliban’s sweep into the capital Kabul brought a disorderly end to 20 years of warfare, the Islamist militants have yet to name a new federal government or reveal how they mean to rule.

In an administrative vacuum, costs have actually soared and crowds have actually gathered at banks to withdraw money.

Greatly armed fighters have actually enforced control on Kabul, but Taliban authorities were grappling with keeping medical facilities and government equipment running after completion of a huge airlift of foreigners and Afghans who had actually assisted Western forces.

As Kabul began a new era of Taliban rule, long lines outside banks and skyrocketing rates in the marketplaces underlined the daily worries now facing its population after the incredible seizure of the city two weeks back. Soraya Ali reporrs. Reuters

The new Taliban-appointed central-bank head has sought to assure banks the group desires a totally operating monetary system, however has actually up until now offered little detail on how it will supply funds for it, bankers familiar with the matter said.

Qatar’s Al Jazeera tv reported Qatari technical experts had gotten to the Taliban’s request to go over resuming operations at Kabul airport, currently unusable.

The Foreign Minister of neighbouring Pakistan, which has close ties to the Taliban, said he expected Afghanistan to have a new “consensus government” within days.

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In Washington, where completion of the United States’ longest war has triggered the biggest crisis of President Joe Biden’s administration, undersecretary of state Victoria Nuland stated the U.S. is looking at all possible alternatives and routes to continue to help Americans and legal long-term residents leave Afghanistan.

Washington would keep having conversations with the Taliban that serve U.S. interests, she informed press reporters, adding the U.S. would take a look at how it might offer help to Afghanistan without benefiting any government that it forms.

Individuals afraid of life under Taliban rule rushed to the borders.

In Panjshir province, members of local militias and remnants of former military systems were still holding out under the leadership of Ahmad Massoud. Senior Taliban leader Amir Khan Motaqi gotten in touch with them to put down weapons and work out.

” The Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan is home for all Afghans,” he said in a speech.

The Taliban have stated an amnesty for all Afghans who dealt with foreign forces during the war that began when they were ousted from power in 2001 over their rejection to hand over al-Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden after the Sept. 11 attacks.

Taliban leaders have actually gotten in touch with Afghans to return house and assistance reconstruct. They have guaranteed to safeguard human rights in an effort to present a more moderate face than their first government, which implemented radical Islamic law, including banning women from education and work.

New footage inside Kabul airport shows automobiles and airplane with bullet damage as well as trashed offices. The Taliban took control of the airport after the last U.S. forces withdrew on Monday. The Globe and Mail

COSTS SOAR

But the more immediate concern for them now is fending off financial collapse. Afghanistan frantically needs money, and the Taliban are unlikely to get speedy access to the approximately US$10- billion in possessions primarily held abroad by the Afghan reserve bank.

The Taliban have purchased banks to resume, however stringent weekly limits on withdrawals have actually been enforced.

Acting reserve bank governor Haji Mohammad Idris satisfied members of the Afghanistan Banks Association and other financiers this week, stated 2 bankers who went to the meeting. The militant group was working to discover solutions for liquidity and increasing inflation, they priced estimate Mr. Idris as saying.

” They were extremely charming and asked banks what their issues were,” said one of the lenders who requested privacy.

Taliban forces patrol at a runway a day after U.S soldiers withdrawal from Hamid Karzai International Airport in Kabul on Aug. 31.

STRINGER/Reuters

Long lines have actually formed at banks, the currency is sinking, inflation is rising, and numerous offices and stores stay shut.

” Everything is costly now, rates are increasing every day,” Kabul resident Zelgai said.

Outside the capital, humanitarian companies have cautioned of impending catastrophe as extreme drought has hit farmers and required countless rural bad to look for shelter in the cities. However foreign donors are not sure about whom to speak with.

Taliban officials have said the problems will reduce as soon as a brand-new government remains in location, and have attracted other countries to maintain economic relations.

Bankers outside Afghanistan stated it would be tough to get the monetary system running once again without the experts who signed up with the exodus. “I don’t understand how they will manage it due to the fact that all the technical personnel, consisting of senior management, has left the nation,” one lender stated.

The European Union will require to engage with the Taliban but will not hurry into officially recognizing them as the new rulers of Afghanistan, a senior EU authorities stated.

Afghans line up outside a bank to get their money after Taliban takeover in Kabul on Sept. 1, 2021.

STRINGER/Reuters

LEFT BEHIND

More than 123,000 people were left from Kabul in the U.S.-led airlift after the Taliban took the city in mid-August, but tens of countless Afghans at danger stayed behind.

With Kabul’s airport out of action, efforts to help Afghans afraid of the Taliban focused on setting up safe passage throughout the borders with Iran, Pakistan and main Asia.

At Torkham, a crossing with Pakistan just east of the Khyber Pass, a Pakistani authorities stated: “A large number of people are waiting on the Afghanistan side for the opening of eviction.”

Uzbekistan’s border with northern Afghanistan stayed shut.

Britain and India held separate talks with Taliban officials in Doha amid fears that up to half a million Afghans could leave.

The UN refugee firm, UNHCR, stated on Wednesday that Afghans had so far largely stayed within Afghanistan and only little numbers had fled to neighbouring nations. It called for US$300- million in worldwide funding for the humanitarian emergency situation.

The Taliban said they had actually surrounded forces in Panjshir, the only province still withstanding, and called on them to negotiate a settlement. Some Taliban leaders mocked the U.S.

” Your power is gone, your gold is gone,” Anas Haqqani, a Taliban leader, stated on Twitter, publishing a photo of himself holding discarded shackles as he explored Bagram prison, where he was held for many years by U.S. forces.

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