Afghanistan : UN urges conflicting sides to halt fighting in Panjshir

New York [US], September 2 : A UN humanitarian coordinator for Afghanistan has urged all parties conflicting in the Afghan region of Panjshir to cease hostilities and abide by humanitarian law.
“The United Nations’ position is that fighting cannot continue,” said Ramiz Alakbarov, the UN humanitarian coordinator for Afghanistan. “We urge all the parties to the conflict to abide by humanitarian law and to let humanitarian workers through to provide aid,” Alakbarov was quoted as saying by TASS. The UN has no precise information on the situation in Panjshir, but it may become available in a few days, the UN coordinator added.
The resistance forces in the country’s northeastern province had said that they would continue fighting the Taliban as their negotiations did not lead to any results. The Panjshir Valley, in the mountainous region north of capital Kabul, has long been the heart of anti-Taliban resistance.
Since mid-August, forces opposed to the Taliban have gathered in the valley under the leadership of Ahmad Massoud, son of famous Afghan commander Ahmad Shah Massoud. Ahmad Massoud, along with former Afghanistan Vice President Amrullah Saleh, are trying to mount a challenge to the Taliban.
Underlining the aim of resistance forces to defeat the Taliban, Saleh has said the resistance is “based in Panjshir” but will defend the rights of all Afghan citizens.
“Our resistance is to defend the rights of all Afghan citizens. Today, this valley hosts all the country and is a hope for all the Afghan people who are escaping from oppression, revenge, prejudice, slipping on people’s property and your dark thinking,” said Saleh.
Last month, the Taliban captured Kabul after mounting a swift offensive in a matter of few weeks. So far, the Taliban have controlled all the regions apart from the Panjshir province.

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