Int’l community urged not to ‘neglect’ Afghanistan amid Ukraine war

Untold India March 6, 2022

Kabul: A humanitarian non-profit has urged the international community not to “neglect” the grave situation in Afghanistan amid Russia’s ongoing war on Ukraine.
In a statement, the New York-based International Rescue Committee (IRC) said that due to the pollical change with subsequent cut off of development aids to the country, Afghanistan has been facing a severe economic and humanitarian situation, reports TOLO News.
“Now with the war in Ukraine, it is believed that the world’s attention might divert from Afghanistan to Ukraine,” it said.
The IRC said that currently nine million Afghans live on the brink of famine, and urged for the immediate distribution of the new funds for the vulnerable Afghans as well as paying the salaries of civil servants.
The non-profit’s statement come as the UK government said it will co-host a virtual pledging event along with the UN later this month aimed at helping alleviate the humanitarian crisis in Afghanistan.
The virtual pledging conference is aimed to help the UN raise $4.4 billion for Afghanistan, the largest amount it has ever requested for a single country.
“Until sweeping measures are taken to restore the Afghanistan economy, people will suffer and lives will be lost. Women and girls are especially at risk, and the IRC calls for urgent action to save lives and avert famine,” IRC said.
On a positive note, the IRC said that it welcomed the recent moves by the US to issue a general license and the scaling up of humanitarian support to Afghanistan by international partners.
“The international community should seize this window of opportunity in Afghanistan to prevent famine, save lives, and put an end to the horrific conditions facing women and girls,” TOLO News quoted the organisation as saying.
On March 1, the World Bank’s executive board approved a plan to use more than $1 billion from Afghanistan’s Trust Fund to finance urgently needed education, agriculture and family programs.
The US Treasury Department also recently announced a general license that allows commercial activities in Afghanistan.
“We applaud the recent good work done by the US and other donor governments to alleviate the suffering in Afghanistan. Specifically, the World Bank board’s decision to provide $1 billion from the Afghanistan Reconstruction Trust Fund to UN agencies and aid organisations operating in the country,” IRC’s Vice President of Policy and Advocacy Amanda Catanzano said.

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Iran presses IAEA for independent, impartial approach

Untold India March 6, 2022

Tehran: Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amir Abdollahian has highlighted the need for an independent, professional and impartial approach by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) to Tehran, according to the Foreign Ministry here.
Abdollahian made the remarks during a meeting on Saturday with visiting Rafael Grossi, director general of the UN nuclear watchdog, where he also stressed the importance of strengthening the agency’s relations and cooperation with Iran in areas beyond oversight and inspection of nuclear facilities, including supporting Iran’s peaceful nuclear industry, reports Xinhua news agency.
During the meeting, the two sides described the cooperation between the IAEA and the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran (AEOI) as positive and successful.
In his earlier press conference with Mohammad Eslami, head of the AEOI, Grossi said they have “decided to try a practical, pragmatic approach” to the remaining specific issues that need to be resolved.
The Vienna talks and the Iran-IAEA cooperation are interrelated, he noted, adding it will be difficult to reach an agreement in the Austrian capital if Iran and the IAEA do not agree on safeguards issues.
Iran and the remaining parties to the 2015 nuclear deal, formally known as the JCPOA, are currently involved in negotiations in Vienna seeking to settle disputes on the revival of the agreement.
Iran signed the JCPOA with world powers in July 2015.
However, former US President Donald Trump pulled out of the accord in May 2018 and reimposed unilateral sanctions on Iran, which prompted the latter to drop some of its nuclear commitments one year later and advance its halted nuclear programme.

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