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Athletics: Olympic champions to headline Doha Diamond League

Doha [Qatar]: The Doha Diamond League comprising several Olympic champions is all set to start on May 13 here at the Qatar Sports Club. The Diamond League is track and field’s most prestigious series sitting in the top tier of the World Athletics one-day meeting competitions. The 2022 Diamond League comprises 13 meetings, starting with the Doha event leading up to the two-day Diamond League Final in Zurich on September 7 and September 8.

It encompasses 32 Diamond Disciplines, following a championship style model. Athletes earn points at the meetings to qualify for the final of their discipline. At each series meeting, athletes are awarded 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2 or 1 point for ranking 1st to 8th, respectively. The top 6 in the field events, the top eight for 100m-800m and the top 10 for 1500m and long distances qualify for the Final.

The winner of each Diamond Discipline at the final will become “Diamond League Champion” and be awarded an iconic Diamond Trophy, and a wild card for the World Athletics Championships.

The Diamond League will broadcast live on Sports 18 as well as on Voot in India until 2024.

The Doha meet will see numerous Olympic champions plying their trade at the Qatar Sports Club, including Swedish pole vault star Mondo Duplantis, Canadian 200m champion Andre De Grasse, joint high jump champion Gianmarco Tamberi from Italy and homegrown hero Mutaz Barshim from Qatar. (ANI)

 

Turkey, Qatar, Taliban agree on “several key issues” to manage, operate Kabul Airport

               

Kabul [Afghanistan]: A trilateral meeting between Turkey, Qatar, and the Taliban officials agreed on “several key issues” on how to manage and operate Kabul Airport.

The Ministry of Transport and Civil Aviation said that the Taliban has reached an agreement with Qatari and Turkish joint ventures on the details of aviation security, ground services and airspace of the five airports of the country at a meeting held in Doha on Thursday, reported Tolo News.
“The details have been discussed, a series of general decisions have been taken, but the talks are still ongoing and we are moving in a positive direction,” said Imamuddin Ahmadi, spokesman for the Ministry of Transport and Civil Aviation.

Meanwhile, the Qatari Foreign Ministry said that the three-party delegation agreed on “several key issues” on how to manage and operate Kabul Airport. However, the Qatari Foreign Ministry did not provide further details, reported Tolo News.

The former chairman of the Afghanistan Civil Aviation Authority (ACAA) called on the Taliban to prepare the terms of the agreement in such a way as to provide a fair and equal basis for Qatari and Turkish companies to operate with domestic companies.

“If the contract is to be regulated from the beginning for the operating contract, the liability of the airlines should become a supervisory role over a period of two to three years,” said Mohammad Qasem Wafayeezada, former chairman of the ACAA, reported Tolo News.

Since the fall of the previous government, regular commercial flights have been suspended in the country.

Now with the handover of the Kabul, Herat, Kandahar, Mazar, and Khost airports to foreign companies, optimism about the resumption of these flights has increased, reported Tolo News.

“Aviation services at Kabul Airport by international companies will have a positive impact on the resumption of flights,” said Ghulam Masum Masumi, air traffic expert. (ANI)

Turkey, Qatar reach deal with Taliban on security at Kabul Airport

Ankara [Turkey] (ANI): Turkey and Qatar have reached an agreement with the Taliban on the issue of maintaining security at the Kabul airport, reported Sputnik.
“Negotiations in Kabul are ongoing. Our delegation is there. An agreement has been reached on the issue of security,” Sputnik quoted a source from the Turkish Foreign Ministry as saying on Thursday. However, discussions are continuing regarding the calculation of the cost of this process, the sources said
“The negotiation process is taking place in a constructive manner,” the source informed further.
It came after the second round of negotiations over the running of Afghanistan’s airports had begun with a Qatar-Turkish company earlier this month.
The Deputy Head of Civil Aviation, Ghulam Gilani Wafa, earlier in January had said the Afghan side will attempt to find the best choice when signing the contract, according to TOLOnews.
“Today, we started online negotiations and they will continue until we reach a decision on the contract. We will start face-to-face negotiations if we feel it is needed,” Gilani Wafa had said. (Image source: Instagram)

Turkey, Qatar enter into deal with Taliban on running airport of Kabul

Kabul [Afghanistan]: Turkey and Qatar have entered into an agreement with the Taliban on the management over the international airport of Kabul and four other airports in Afghanistan, Sputnik reported.
The parties held “productive and effective” negotiations during which they agreed to create technical groups to work on details of the operations in the coming days, the Anadolu news agency reported on Friday, citing its sources. “Doha and Ankara have agreed to jointly operate Kabul International Airport,” said the sources.
The Turkish-Qatari Delegation will visit Kabul to continue the joint work, Sputnik reported.
Earlier, the Qatari technical team had repaired Kabul International Airport after the US withdrawal was completed on August 31.
International and local flights were suspended at Kabul’s international airport and across Afghanistan after the Taliban seized power in mid-August.

Turkey, Qatar to discuss airports management with Taliban

Kabul [Afghanistan]: Taliban on Thursday said that a joint delegation of Turkey and UAE are negotiating over the management of five airports of Afghanistan.
Ministry of Transportation and Civil Aviation of the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan spokesperson Imamudin Ahmadi said that delegations of the two countries will begin talks with officials and technical teams of the ministry, reported Khaama Press. As per Ahmadi, the five airports in the discussion were Kabul International Airport, Kandahar International Airport, Mazar-e-Sharif International Airport, Khost Airport, and Herat Airport.
The ministry said that the government will fully focus on the country’s national interests while signing agreements with Turkish and Qatari companies, reported Tolo News.
“The contract will be about the tower, ground handling and some more technical sections,” said Imamuddin Ahmadi, a spokesman of the transport ministry.
The ministry said that after the agreement is signed, international flights will be operational for 24 hours a day in Afghanistan, Tolo News reported.
The development comes two days after the Turkish Foreign Minister had announced that Turkish and Qatari technical will visit Kabul and will meet authorities over the management of the airports.
Mevult Cavusoglu had said that the two countries will jointly take responsibility for the airports if they reach an agreement.
Earlier, the Qatari technical team had repaired Kabul International Airport after the US withdrawal was completed on August 31.
International and local flights were suspended at Kabul’s international airport and across Afghanistan after the Taliban seized power in mid-August.

Gareth Southgate and Steve Holland set to coach England for 2022 World Cup in Qatar

London [UK]: England manager Gareth Southgate and assistant coach Steve Holland have been renewed for their respective duties and will lead the Three Lions to the 2022 World Cup in Qatar. Both have signed new contracts that have extended their roles in the team till December 2024.
Southgate, who marks five years in charge of the Three Lions at the end of this month, has overseen a period of positive progress, guiding England to a FIFA World Cup semi-final and UEFA Nations League third place before securing the best men’s performance in 55 years with the UEFA EURO final this summer. “I am delighted that Steve and I have been able to extend our stay in our respective roles. It remains an incredible privilege to lead this team. I would like to take this opportunity to thank Mark [Bullingham, FA CEO), John [McDermott, FA technical director] and the Board for their support — and of course the players and support team for their hard work. We have a great opportunity in front of us and I know they and the fans are all excited about what this squad could achieve in future,” said Southgate as reported by Englandfootball.com
FIFA 2022 is scheduled to take place between November 21 to December 18 in Qatar.

Blinken, Qatari FM discuss Afghanistan

Washington [US]: US Secretary of State, Antony Blinken, and Qatari counterpart Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al-Thani discussed the situation in Afghanistan on Sunday local time.
Secretary Blinken thanked Qatar for its strong partnership on regional security issues and assistance to safely transit U.S. citizens, Lawful Permanent Residents, and Afghans at risk, US State Department said. “Secretary of State Antony J. Blinken spoke today with Qatari Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al-Thani about Afghanistan. Secretary Blinken thanked Qatar for its strong partnership on regional security issues and assistance to safely transit U.S. citizens, Lawful Permanent Residents, and Afghans at risk,” the state department’s readout read.
Qatar is hosting talks between Taliban and Western officials. The country holds influence over the group. Qatar, which hosts a major US airbase, has been the gateway for 55000 people airlifted out of Afghanistan.
The Qatar foreign minister said the only way forward is to offer the current Taliban administration “more collaboration, cooperation and assistance” but that Afghanistan should move towards an inclusive government in an internal process whereby Afghans “decide their future”.
Meanwhile, the US media had also informed that Washington intends to resume evacuation flights from Afghanistan by the end of this year.
After the Taliban’s hostile takeover of Afghanistan on August 15, hundreds of people rushed to the airport, which resulted in several days of chaos. As foreigners and Afghans who helped foreign forces were striving to leave, the airport was shaken by terrorist attacks organized by a local affiliate of the Islamic State terrorist group, Sputnik reported.

Neymar believes 2022 World Cup in Qatar will be his last for Brazil

Paris [France]: Neymar has admitted that in all likelihood next year’s FIFA World Cup in Qatar will be his last, as the strain of the game has taken its toll on the Brazilian’s body and mind.
The PSG star has represented the Selecao at the 2014 World Cup on home soil and in Russia four years later but expects the tournament next winter to be his final appearance on football’s biggest stage. “I think it’s my last World Cup,” the 29-year-old said in DAZN’s exclusive new documentary, Neymar & The Line Of Kings.
“I see it as my last because I don’t know if I have the strength of mind to deal with football any more. So I’ll do everything to turn up well, do everything to win with my country, to realise my greatest dream since I was little. And I hope I can do it,” he added.
Neymar will be 34 in 2026 when the USA, Canada and Mexico will host the biggest competition in the world.
Aside from the Olympic gold, he won at the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro, Neymar’s only trophy with the national team came in 2013 when Brazil lifted the Confederation Cup.

Taliban ask US to unfreeze Afghan financial assets

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The Taliban have urged the United States to unfreeze Afghanistan’s central bank reserves, during the first in-person meeting in Qatar after the takeover of Kabul in August.

Doha [Qatar], October 10 : The two sides on Saturday held their first meeting in Doha to turn a “new page on their relationship”. This is the first in-person meeting between the two sides since the US drawdown from Afghanistan in mid-August. Taliban Acting Foreign Minister Amir Khan Muttaqi said that they want to engage with the international community and will not be in favour of one country and against the other one.
“The need to establish good positive relations with each other on an equal basis is being emphasized in the discussions. We stressed the need for unfreezing of Afghan financial assets in the wake of difficult circumstances facing Afghanistan,” the foreign minister said, as quoted by the Voice of America (VOA).
“We clearly told [the Americans] that nobody benefits from an unstable Afghanistan, so no one should try to weaken the current government of Afghanistan or fuel problems for our Afghan people who already are struggling economically,” Muttaqi said.
Recently, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) had put on hold funds to Afghanistan amid the rising uncertainty in the country.
The developments came after IMF recently announced a USD 650 billion Special Drawing Rights (SDR) allocation for member countries, but Afghanistan at the moment will not be allowed to access these funds, Tolo News reported.
Last month, IMF spokesperson Gerry Rice said at a press conference that Afghanistan will not have access to this grant because of the uncertainty over Afghanistan’s government.

Qatar 2022 will logistically be the best FIFA WC, believes Mikael Silvestre

Doha [Qatar]: Former Manchester United and France defender Mikael Silvestre believes Qatar 2022 will, logistically, be the best FIFA World Cup ever.
Qatar in 2022 will host the first FIFA World Cup in the Middle East and Arab world and will only be the second one to be played on the Asian continent. The 22nd edition of the tournament will kick off on November 21, 2022, when Qatar — the reigning champions of Asia — take their FIFA World Cup bow at the tournament’s first match at the stunning 60,000-seat Al Bayt Stadium in Al Khor City. Notably, Qatar will host the most compact version of the tournament in modern history. All eight stadiums are within 50km of central Doha, while fans, players, and officials will be able to stay in one accommodation throughout the event, which will conclude with the final at the 80,000-seat Lusail Stadium on December 18, 2022 — which is also Qatar National Day.
It promises to be a festival of football like no other — with everyone always in the thick of the action and never far from a stadium, fan zone, or tourist attraction. “This (Qatar 2022) is going to be the best World Cup in terms of travelling. Logistically, it will be so easy (for fans and players),” Silvestre told goal.com.
Silvestre is no stranger to the challenges of a World Cup, having represented France in two World Cups in 2002 and 2006. In Qatar 2022, teams will not have to change their base camp and training facilities during the tournament, given that all venues are easily accessible from Doha. Silvestre feels this is a gamechanger and eliminates the stress and anxiety of moving to a new base or venue among the players, which in turn will help them perform to their best.
“Once you have a camp, you won’t have to change. It’s less stress on the mind and body of players. The cooling system is amazing (in the stadiums) and it will be so nice for the fans and players alike,” he added.

Qatar terms Taliban’s decisions on girl education ‘very disappointing’

Qatar has termed the Taliban’s decisions on girls’ education in Afghanistan “very disappointing” and a step backwards and called on the group’s leadership to look to Doha for how to run an Islamic system.

Doha [Qatar], October 1 : Taliban, which came into power in August, have imposed several restrictions on women including refusal to allow them to resume their studies, Al Jazeera reported. The remarks were made by Qatar’s top diplomat Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al Thani at a news conference on Thursday with European Union Foreign Policy Chief Josep Borrell in Doha.
“The recent actions that we have seen unfortunately in Afghanistan, it has been very disappointing to see some steps being taken backwards,” he said.
“We need to keep engaging them and urging them not to take such actions, and we have also been trying to demonstrate for the Taliban how Muslim countries can conduct their laws, how they can deal with the women’s issues,” said Sheikh Mohammed.
“One of the examples is the State of Qatar, which is a Muslim country; our system is an Islamic system [but] we have women outnumbering men in workforces, in government and in higher education.”
The Taliban has been accused of human rights abuses in recent weeks, including publicly stringing up the bodies of four alleged kidnappers from cranes in Herat last week.
The display of the dead kidnapping suspects, who were killed in a shootout, was the most high-profile public punishment since the Taliban swept to power last month

Kabul airport to become operational for commercial flights in few days, says Qatari envoy

Doha [Qatar]: Qatari Ambassador to Afghanistan Saeed bin Mubarak Al Khayarin on Saturday said that the repairing works at the Kabul airport is underway and will soon be ready to receive several commercial flights in the next few days.
“A group of specialists have prepared the airport for the flights with humanitarian assistance and will prepare [it] for receiving civilian flights in the near future,” the diplomat said, citing Al-Jazeera, reported Sputnik. The airport is already operating flights from Kabul to the cities of Mazar-i-Sharif and Kandahar, he added.
Earlier, Al Jazeera reported that the domestic flights from Kabul will resume from Friday.
The airport has been closed since the last evacuation flight took off on September 1.
The last flight carrying American forces left Kabul in the early hours of Tuesday morning – ending 20 years of military presence in the country.

US to move Afghanistan diplomatic mission to Qatar: Blinken

Washington DC [US]: The United States is moving its Afghanistan diplomatic mission to Qatar, said Secretary of State Antony Blinken on Monday (local time).
“First, we built a new team to help lead this new mission. As of today, we suspended our diplomatic presence in Kabul and transferred our operations to Doha, Qatar, which will soon be formally notified to Congress. Given the uncertain security environment and political situation in Afghanistan, it was the prudent step to take,” Blinken said in remarks at the State Department. Blinken said that for the time being, the US will use this post in Doha to “manage our diplomacy with Afghanistan, including consular affairs, administrating humanitarian assistance, and working with allies, partners and regional and international stakeholders to coordinate our engagement and messaging to the Taliban,” CNN reported.
The secretary of state thanked the US’ allies and partners for their contribution in Afghanistan.
“This operation was a global endeavor in every way. Many countries stepped up with robust contributions at the airlift including working at the airport. Some are now serving as transit countries allowing evacuees to be processed on their way to the final destination. Others agreed to resettle Afghan refugees permanently and we hope more will do so in the days and weeks ahead. We’re truly grateful for their support. Now, US military flights have ended and our troops have departed Afghanistan,” he said.
Blinken said that State Department believes there is “a small number of Americans, under 200 and likely closer to 100, who remain in Afghanistan and want to leave.”
“We’re trying to determine exactly how many. We’re going through manifests and calling and texting through our lists,” Blinken said. The top US diplomat noted that there are residents of Afghanistan who have US passports who were trying to determine if they should leave, reported CNN.
Secretary of State also called the United States’ next steps in Afghanistan “a new chapter”.
“A new chapter of America’s engagement with Afghanistan has begun. It’s one in which we will lead with our diplomacy. The military mission is over. A new diplomatic mission has begun,” Bllinken said.
The top US diplomat noted that there are residents of Afghanistan who have US passports who were trying to determine if they should leave.
“Our commitment to them, and to all Americans in Afghanistan, and everywhere in the world, continues,” Blinken said, adding that the State Department would help Americans leave no matter when they decide that they wish to depart.
General Kenneth McKenzie, the head of the US Central Command, made the withdrawal announcement at a Pentagon news briefing.
The last flight, a large C-17 military transport, took off from Hamid Karzai International Airport. President Joe Biden set a deadline of August 31 for the withdrawal earlier this year.

Afghan crisis: India brings back 146 of its evacuated nationals from Doha

India on Monday brought back 146 of its nationals in four different flights from Qatar’s capital Doha.

New Delhi, India, August 23 : India on Monday brought back 146 of its nationals in four different flights from Qatar’s capital Doha, days after they were evacuated from Afghanistan by NATO and American aircraft in view of the deteriorating security situation in the war-torn country.

People familiar with the development said the Indians were flown back to Delhi as part of India’s mission to evacuate its citizens and Afghan partners from Kabul following its takeover by the Taliban over a week back, they said.

It was the second batch of Indians to be brought back from Doha after their evacuation from Kabul. A total of 135 Indians were flown back to Delhi from Doha in a special flight on Sunday.

Out of the second batch of Indians who returned home from Doha, 104 people were brought back in a Vistara flight, 30 by a Qatar Airways flight and 11 of them returned by an Indigo flight. One person returned by an Air India flight, they said.

India on Sunday brought back 392 people including two Afghan lawmakers in three different flights under the evacuation mission amid a continued scramble by various countries to rescue their citizens from Kabul.

The total number of people evacuees included the first batch of 135 Indians who were flown back from Doha. It is learnt that the Indians evacuated to Doha from Kabul were employees of a number of foreign companies that were operating in Afghanistan and they were flown out of Kabul by NATO and American aircraft.

The Taliban seized control of Kabul on August 15. Within two days of the Taliban’s capture of Kabul, India evacuated 200 people, including the Indian envoy and other staffers of its embassy in the Afghan capital.

The first evacuation flight brought back over 40 people, mostly staffers at the Indian embassy, on August 16. The second aircraft evacuated around 150 people including Indian diplomats, officials, security personnel and some stranded Indians from Kabul on August 17.

The Taliban swept across Afghanistan this month, seizing control of almost all key towns and cities, including Kabul, in the backdrop of the withdrawal of the US forces.

Qatar, Germany call for peaceful power transition in Afghanistan post-Taliban takeover

Doha [Qatar]: During a phone talk between Qatari Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani and German Chancellor Angela Merkel on Tuesday, the two sides called for stepping up necessary efforts to achieve national reconciliation and peaceful power transition in Afghanistan post-Taliban takeover.
Qatar and Germany exchanged views on the latest developments in the region and the world, especially the drastic change in the situation in Afghanistan, reported Xinhua. The Qatari emir stressed the importance of continuing peace talks and efforts to achieve reconciliation and a peaceful power transition in Afghanistan, the emir’s office said in a statement.
Since last September, Qatar has hosted rounds of negotiations between the Taliban and the Afghan government, which have not made any significant progress due to the differences between the two parties.
Taliban has a political office in Doha, as Qatar hosts several Taliban leaders, including its political chief Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar, who left for Kandahar on Tuesday, reported Xinhua.
The Taliban leaders are discussing future government plans in Doha after gaining control of Kabul and seizing the presidential palace in Afghanistan’s capital.
The terror group is in touch with the international community and intra-Afghan parties to make government in Afghanistan.
On Sunday, the Taliban entered Kabul and took control of the presidential palace. The terrorist group is now everywhere in the capital, walking the streets of Kabul.
Over Afghanistan’s situation, the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) on Monday called for an immediate cessation of all hostilities and the establishment of a new government that is united, inclusive and representative.

India, Qatar conducts joint naval exercise ‘Zair-Al-Bahr’

New Delhi [India]: The second edition of exercise Zair-Al-Bahr between the Indian Navy and Qatar Emiri Naval Force (QENF) was conducted from August 9-14 in the Persian Gulf.
The present edition of the exercise included a three-day harbour phase followed by a two-day sea phase. The sea phase comprised of tactical maritime exercises involving Surface Action, Anti-Piracy exercises, Air Defence, Maritime surveillance, Boarding operations, and SAR exercises, the Indian Navy said in a statement. “In the sea phase of the exercise, Indian Navy Stealth Frigate Indian Navy Ship Trikand, QENF Missile Boats of Barzan and Damsah class, Fast-Attack Crafts of MRTP 34 class and Rafale Fighter Aircraft participated,” the statement added.
Indian Navy remains committed to ensure peace, stability and security in the region and is ever-ready to cooperate and collaborate with partner Navies on issues of Maritime safety and security.
The 2nd edition of exercise Zair-Al-Bahr will contribute towards the Indian Navy’s efforts to consolidate Interoperability and forge strong bonds of friendship with the Qatari Navy. The bilateral maritime exercise between two navies would further strengthen the maritime exchanges between the two countries and enhance maritime security in the region.

US, India and China among 12 nations decide not to recognise any Afghanistan govt imposed by force

Representatives from US and Qatar, the UN, China, Uzbekistan, Pakistan, the UK, the EU, Germany, India, Norway, Tajikistan, Turkey and Turkmenistan joined a regional conclave on Thursday to discuss ways to contain the escalating security situation in Afghanistan.

Washington, USA, August 13 : Twelve nations, including the US, India and China, along with representatives of the UN and EU have decided that they would not recognise any government in Afghanistan that seeks to take control through the barrel of a gun, the State Department has said, amid the continued Taliban offensive across the war-torn country.

Representatives from the United States and Qatar, the UN, China, Uzbekistan, Pakistan, the UK, the EU, Germany, India, Norway, Tajikistan, Turkey and Turkmenistan joined a regional conclave on Thursday to discuss ways to contain the escalating security situation in Afghanistan.

The conclave was hosted by Qatar.

The participants “agreed, first and foremost, that the peace process needs to be accelerated. And they also agreed, importantly, that they will not recognise any government that is imposed through military force,” State Department Spokesperson Ned Price told reporters on Thursday.

His remarks came as the Taliban advanced across Afghanistan and took control over key provincial capitals.

Reports say that the militant group has captured Herat and Kandahar, the country’s second and third largest cities after Kabul, and a strategic provincial capital on Thursday.

It comes just weeks before the end of the American military mission in Afghanistan.The US Embassy in Afghanistan issued a security alert Thursday, urging Americans to “leave Afghanistan immediately using available commercial flight options.”

“So this is not just the United States making this point. This is not just the United States speaking with our voice. This is the international community, as you see represented in the consensus that has emerged today,” Prince said.

He said the consensus is on “this very simple point: any force that seeks to take control of Afghanistan with the barrel of a gun, through the barrel of a gun, will not be recognised, will not have legitimacy, will not accrue the international assistance that any such government would likely need to achieve any semblance of durability.”

Price said the international community came together to speak with one voice on this point over the course of weeks and months.

“I’ve spoken just recently about the UN Security Council statement that emanated last week, where the members of the Security Council recalled Resolution 2513, reaffirmed that there is no military solution to the conflict, and declared they do not support the restoration of an Islamic emirate,” Price said.

JP Singh, the Joint Secretary in the Pakistan-Afghanistan-Iran division in the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA), represented India at the meeting in Doha, officials said in New Delhi.

India on Thursday said the situation in Afghanistan is of concern and that it continues to hope for a comprehensive ceasefire to end violence in that country.

Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) Spokesperson Arindam Bagchi also said India is in touch with all the stakeholders in Afghanistan and closely monitoring the ground situation in the strife-torn country.

Zalmay Khalilzad, the US envoy, travelled to Doha, Qatar, where the Taliban maintain a political office to persuade the insurgents to return to peace talks with the Afghan government as American and NATO forces finish their pullout from the country.

The latest US military intelligence assessment suggests Kabul could come under insurgent pressure within 30 days and that, if current trends hold, the Taliban could gain full control of the country within a few months.

Jaishankar meets Qatar’s special envoy

External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar shares concerns over Afghanistan’s security situation

New Delhi [India], August 7: External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar on Saturday shared concerns over Afghanistan’s security situation during a meet with Qatar’s Special Envoy Mutlaq bin Majed Al-Qahtani in New Delhi.
During the meet, Jaishankar shared New Delhi’s perspective on the recent developments in war-torn Afghanistan. Majed is on a two-day visit to India to discuss the peace process in Afghanistan. On Friday, the envoy met with multiple key officials in the external affairs ministry.
Taking to Twitter, Jaishankar wrote, “Rapid deterioration of the security situation is a serious matter. A peaceful and stable Afghanistan requires that the rights and interests of all sections of society are promoted and protected.”
Recently during the UNSC meeting on Afghanistan’s worsening situation, India’s Permanent Representative to the UN TS Tirumurti said, “There should be zero tolerance for terrorism in all its forms and manifestations for enduring peace in Afghanistan and terrorist safe havens in the region must be dismantled.”
Over the past few weeks, the Taliban have captured several key districts in Afghanistan including the country’s northeastern province Takhar. Last week, the Taliban had killed a popular Afghan comedian in the country’s Kandahar province.
After capturing new areas in Afghanistan, the Taliban has re-imposed repressive laws and retrograde policies on Afghan women that defined its 1996-2001 rule when they enforced their version of Islamic Sharia law.

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