The UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres has recently presented an assessment of the situation in Afghanistan to the UN Security Council, recommending a roadmap for the reintegration of the country into the global system. The assessment outlined a comprehensive strategy to resolve severe economic, social and political issues along with suggesting measures for building confidence between international and Afghan stakeholders, and among Afghans themselves. The UN Chief echoed the urgency for a general shift away from politically driven aid approaches towards increased and more sustainable assistance, especially in key sectors such as food security, livelihoods and healthcare. The assessment also called for establishing economic dialogue and reforms to resolve barriers to economic recovery, enable partial restoration of regular transit, trade, and other means of connectivity between Afghans and the world along with encouraging activities that help Afghans realise their political, economic, cultural and social rights through concerted efforts and collaboration. The state and the people of Afghanistan plunged into dire political, economic and humanitarian crises after the US-led coalition withdrew from the country and the ruling Taliban leaders took control of the government in mid-2021. The seizure of Afghan national assets abroad, non-recognition of Taliban rule along with reduction and pause in foreign economic assistance that makes up more than half of the country’s annual budget prompted a countrywide social and humanitarian crisis in the war-torn nation. Unfortunately, the Islamic Emirate has not yet been recognized by any country as it failed to fulfil its commitment at international levels, which caused significant political and economic challenges for the government as well as the Afghan public at large. Presently, a mass influx of Afghan returnees is underway and hundreds of thousands of Afghan nationals pouring into their country from neighbouring states including Pakistan, Iran, Turkey and other destinations while their settlement and rehabilitation is a great task for the interim government. Historically, certain policies of the Afghan interim rulers have caused significant distance between the Islamic Emirate and the global community including Afghanistan’s neighbours. Hence, the non-inclusiveness of interim setup, a bar on girls’ education, and women’s liberties and persistent no-disassociation from terrorism pose major hurdles in the path of the global recognition of Islamic Emirate, normalization of diplomatic, trade and economic relations, together with regional connectivity and economic integration with its neighbours. Two years after taking control of the country, the Islamic Emirate failed to overcome those challenges which not only undermined its relations with neighbours and the global community but worsened over time. Interestingly, the recent assessment presented by Secretary-General Antonio Guterres also identified these snags as impediments to the normalization of relations and revival of global cooperation with the Afghan authorities. The UN Secretary-General suggested effective coordination and cooperation between the de facto Afghan rulers and the international stakeholders on a bilateral and multilateral basis to curb the threat of terrorism, production and trafficking of drugs animating out of that country. The document also emphasized adherence to principles of non-discrimination, ensuring respect for women’s rights and fundamental rights and freedoms of all Afghans that would pave the way for greater cooperation between the global community and Afghanistan. So far, there is a huge contradiction between the priorities of the global community and the manifesto of the Afghan interim rulers, that gap has widened over the past years and is unlikely to be filled in the future. Hence, the Afghan people are the only losers in this tussle until any side pauses its resoluteness and respects the comforts/well-being of the poor masses.

By admin

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *