When Afghanistan’s first midwife-led birth centre opened in the impoverished district of Dasht-e-Barchi in western Kabul this year it was a symbol of hope and defiance.
It began receiving expectant mothers in June, just over a year after a devastating attack by gunmen on the maternity wing at the local hospital left 24 people dead, including 16 mothers, a midwife and two young children.
Source: Financial Times
Two months after the Taliban seized power, violence, death and fear still stalk Afghanistan. US troops might have departed but the new Islamist rulers in Kabul are now threatened by an insurgency launched by Islamic State-Khorasan Province, an Isis-inspired jihadi movement that has deep ideological differences with the Taliban.
Source: Al Jazeera
The former United States special envoy for Afghanistan Zalmay Khalilzad said the Biden administration should engage with the Taliban to help ease the humanitarian crisis unfolding in the country now.
Source: Al Jazeera
In an interview with Turkish media aired on October 1, Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan revealed that his government is in talks with the Pakistan Taliban (Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan or TTP). Following a period of relative dormancy, the TTP has been significantly more active this year. Khan admitted that Islamabad is offering the group a number of rewards – from political amnesty to prisoner releases – in return for laying down arms.
Source: Al Jazeera
Senior officials of Afghanistan’s neighbouring states have gathered in Iran’s capital for a one-day conference to discuss the situation in the Taliban-ruled country.
The foreign ministers of Iran, Pakistan, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan and Turkmenistan met on Wednesday in Tehran, joined by their counterparts from China and Russia via video link.
As the withdrawal of US troops from Afghanistan was turning ugly, and the Taliban took province after province, the world watched as the concept of human rights disappeared overnight and a massive exodus began for those in fear for their lives. Reports of mass killings and the targeting of religious minorities, women and girls, human rights defenders and others, followed.
Source: The Northern Echo
MIDDLESBROUGH Council is currently supporting four families from Afghanistan.
Mayor Andy Preston has previously stated that Middlesbrough would take in up to fifteen Afghan families following the Taliban takeover in the country.
The son of Taliban founder Mullah Omar appeared in public for the first time on Wednesday, as Afghanistan’s hardline rulers try to polish their media image.
The televised event saw Mohammad Yaqoob, Afghanistan’s new defence minister, appealing to local businessmen to invest in hospitals and clinics, signalling the Taliban are emerging from the shadows.
Source: The Economist
TWO MONTHS after the Taliban’s victory, civilians face a looming disaster. Will Western governments dig their heels in, or turn the aid taps back on? India’s government has increasingly turned to high-tech means for delivering government services. But its digital-first solutions are inaccessible to millions of citizens. And we look at the business of renting clothing, as Rent the Runway goes public with a sky-high valuation.
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Source: The Moscow Times
In recent weeks, Tajikistan has hit the headlines for its hardline stance on Afghanistan, where the Taliban recently returned to power. It might seem that if anyone should be concerned about maintaining good relations with the Taliban, it’s Tajikistan. It has an extensive mountainous border with Afghanistan that is difficult to control, and the Tajik military is believed to be the weakest in Central Asia. Tajikistan is a transit stop for most of the drug traffic from Afghanistan to Russia and Europe, and the country has suffered numerous terrorist attacks in the last few years.