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UN says Taliban envoy can meet Pakistan, China ministers next week

Diplomats stated on Monday that the UN Security Council committee approved a request from Pakistan’s UN mission to grant an exemption to the Taliban administration’s foreign minister, Amir Khan Muttaqi.

The exemption would allow Muttaqi, who is currently under Security Council sanctions including a travel ban, asset freeze, and arms embargo, to travel from Afghanistan to Pakistan next week to meet with the foreign ministers of Pakistan and China between May 6-9.

The letter to the Security Council Taliban sanctions committee did not specify the purpose of the meeting, but it mentioned that Pakistan would cover all expenses related to Muttaqi’s trip.

Both Chinese and Pakistani officials have previously expressed their willingness to include Taliban-led Afghanistan in the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) infrastructure project, which is part of the Belt and Road Initiative.

With its strategic location as a trade and transit route between South and Central Asia, Afghanistan also holds vast untapped mineral resources.

Following the withdrawal of US-led forces after 20 years of war, the Taliban took control of Afghanistan in August 2021.

Last month, the Security Council committee permitted Muttaqi to travel to Uzbekistan for a meeting with the foreign ministers of neighboring countries to discuss pressing matters related to peace, security, and stability.

UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres 

UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres has commenced a two-day closed-door meeting in Doha with special envoys on Afghanistan from several countries.
The meeting aims to “achieve a common understanding within the international community on how to engage with the Taliban,” according to UN spokesman Stephane Dujarric.

Participants from China, France, Germany, India, Indonesia, Iran, Japan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Norway, Pakistan, Qatar, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Tajikistan, Turkey, Turkmenistan, the United Arab Emirates, the United Kingdom, the United States, Uzbekistan, the European Union, and the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation will discuss human rights, including women’s and girls’ rights, inclusive governance, countering terrorism and drug trafficking.

The Taliban administration was not invited to attend the meeting.

Pavan Manzoor
Written By

Pavan Manzoor is an experienced content writer , editor and social media handler along with a track record of youth-oriented activities in Pakistan and abroad. She was selected as a fully-funded delegate as a leadership fellow in Turkey. She also led a team of 5 volunteers at the week-long Young Professionals Fellowship in Maldives. She is also a member of the Youth Standing Committee on Higher Education.

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