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Islamic State Now Expands To All Afghanistan Provinces; UN Envoy Warns

Residents gather next to a damaged minibus after a bomb blast where two people were killed and five wounded in Kabul on November 17, 2021. (Photo by AFP) (Photo by -/AFP via Getty Images)

The UN ambassador to Afghanistan warned that the Islamic State’s regional branch is now aggressively present in all districts. Deborah Lyons, the UN special representative for Afghanistan, said the Taliban “appears to rely heavily on extrajudicial detentions and killings” in response to suspected Islamic State-Khorasan members.

During the UN Security Council meeting, Lyons noted Another important negative trend. She said in a Reuters report the Taliban’s failure to stop the Islamic State’s advance in Iraq and Levant Khorasan Province. She went on to say that ISILKP now seems to be operating in practically all regions. The Taliban’s sworn nemesis, IS-K was responsible for a suicide explosion outside Kabul airport in August and other bombs in Shia mosques recently.

United Nations Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA) head Deborah Lyons attends a Joint Coordination and Monitoring Board meeting (JCMB) at the Afghan presidential palace in Kabul on July 28, 2021. (Photo by SAJJAD HUSSAIN / AFP) (Photo by SAJJAD HUSSAIN/AFP via Getty Images)

US Aid

The United States, which withdrew from the nation in August, has provided $474 million in humanitarian aid this year. According to Voice of America, U.S. Ambassador Jeffrey DeLaurentis told the council that the country continues to pay close attention to whether the Taliban is demonstrating compliance with its commitments on counterterrorism, respect for human rights, and inclusivity.”

The Taliban administration has yet to get official international recognition, and the former government’s representative continues to represent it at the United Nations.

Ambassador Ghulam Isaczai said that the situation in Afghanistan is highly precarious. He also the revival of the Doha peace talks and the convening of an international peace summit.

Isaczai called for considerable foreign aid to help with the humanitarian crisis. Still, he emphasized that funds should not go straight to the Taliban.

As worried neighbors, Iran, Tajikistan, and Pakistan addressed the council as well. Pakistan, which has had a friendly relationship with the Taliban, has said that the new authorities are “responding favorably” to foreign involvement.

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Ambassador Munir Akram informed the council, “The horror possibilities that were expected after 15 August have not come to fruition. In Afghanistan, there has been no widespread violence or abuses of human rights.”

He said that the security situation has “much improved” and that girls’ schools, with the exception of secondary institutions, are open. Akram said the Taliban claim that this is due to a shortage of instructors and their inability to pay them.

The glass may still be half full, Akram observed. But involvement has generated development. The Pakistani envoy also shot his Afghan colleague, claiming that the council would benefit from hearing from people who truly rule Kabul.

UN Envoy Warns of Potential “Humanitarian Catastrophe” in Afghanistan

The UN’s special envoy for Afghanistan has warned of a possible “humanitarian disaster” in the country as Islamic State’s regional state grows.

Deborah Lyons told the United Nations Security Council (per Gandhara) that 60 percent of Afghanistan’s 38 million people suffer from hunger. The situation would likely deteriorate throughout the winter, she added.

Lyons said the international community must find methods to help the Afghan people, who feel abandoned, neglected, and even punished by situations that are not their fault. She said that the Taliban’s financial restrictions had immobilized the banking system, hurting every part of the economy.

The international community has to find a means to offer financial help to reverse this, including compensation for healthcare employees in public hospitals and staff in food-security programs. She assured council members that the UN would do everything possible to prevent funding from being diverted to the Taliban.

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