Taliban welcomes Russia’s plans to remove them from list of terrorists – spokesman

Source: TASS

CAIRO, October 25. /TASS/. The Taliban movement (outlawed in Russia) welcomes remarks by Russian President Vladimir Putin about possibility to exclude the group from the list of terrorist organizations, Abdul Qahar Balkhi, spokesperson of the Afghan Foreign Ministry in the interim government of the country, said on Sunday.

Read more…

Russia-led bloc concludes drills near Afghan border to boost Tajik security

Source: Reuters

HARB-MAIDON TRAINING GROUND, Tajikistan, Oct 23 (Reuters) – A Russia-led military exercise held over six days near the Tajik-Afghan border, designed to demonstrate Moscow stands ready to protect Dushanbe in the event of an incursion from the south, reached its conclusion on Saturday.

Tajikistan’s relations with the Taliban leadership in Kabul have been strained from the start and reports of troop build-up on both sides of the border have alarmed Moscow, which operates a military base in the former Soviet republic.

Read more…

‘I was born in war’: an Afghan family’s joy at resettlement in UK

Source: Guardian

An intricately handwoven rug is one of the few things British embassy worker Shukoor Sangar and his family were able to bring with them when they were hastily airlifted out of Kabul in August.

It now covers the grey carpet in the living room of the family’s new flat, courtesy of the west London borough of Hammersmith and Fulham, which has worked with the Home Office to offer permanent housing to four families among the 7,000 people brought to the UK under the Afghan relocations and assistance policy (Arap).

Read more…

White House makes massive change to resettlement program to help Afghan refugees

Source: CNN

(CNN)The Biden administration is taking an unprecedented step to resettle the 55,600 Afghan evacuees from the US military bases where they’ve been living for weeks and into permanent homes, an official leading the effort told CNN.

The move marks the biggest change to the resettlement program since 1980, when the modern-day infrastructure for admitting refugees was put in place.

Read more…

Afghan National Music Institute strikes a chord in Qatar

Source: Al Jazeera

Doha, Qatar – In a cramped room in an evacuee compound, a music conductor without a baton instructs students familiarising themselves with instruments that are not their own. The conductor demands silence from spectators bobbing their heads in and out of the room.

The group has not practised together in nearly three months, not since their school’s doors in Kabul were closed when the Taliban overtook the Afghan government. Although their musical careers back home are in limbo, they have a chance to display their talents once again, and plan to put on a show.

Read more…

Taliban ‘forcibly evicting’ Hazaras and opponents in Afghanistan

Source: Guardian

Thousands of people have been forced from their homes and land by Taliban officials in the north and south of Afghanistan, in what amounted to collective punishment, illegal under international law, Human Rights Watch has warned.

Many of the evictions targeted members of the Shia Hazara community, while others were of people connected to the former Afghan government. Land and homes seized this way have often been redistributed to Taliban supporters, HRW said.

Read more…

Afghan refugees declaring themselves homeless over resettlement issues

Source: BBC

Dozens of Afghan families staying in hotels as part of a scheme to resettle them are declaring themselves homeless.

More than 200 families have asked councils in London for emergency accommodation.

They are concerned that the Home Office scheme they are currently part of could see them moved to anywhere in the UK and away from family and friends.

Read more…