Afghanistan: Taliban seeks foreign aid, reveals expectations from other countries
It's been a week since the Taliban took over Afghanistan, returning to power after 20 years in the war-torn country. However, the Taliban is struggling to form a government and dealing with several issues—overcoming resistance and gaining Afghans' acceptance, finding the international community's recognition, and more importantly—receiving foreign aid to "rebuild" Afghanistan. Now, the Taliban's spokesperson revealed their expectations from other countries, including India.
Hope to announce our new government very soon: Taliban spokesperson
On the delay in forming a government, the Taliban's spokesperson Suhail Shaheen told CNN-News18 they are taking time to consult and deliberate with all politicians and personalities as they intend to form an inclusive government. "We hope to announce our new government very soon," Shaheen said. The group reached out to former Vice-President Amrullah Saleh, who has been opposing the Taliban.
'A vast consultation with our opponents and non-opponents'
"We are focusing on having all Afghan personnel in this discussion. Otherwise, it was easy...to announce the new government on the first day of...entering Kabul city. But we didn't do that...rather we decided to have a vast consultation with our opponents and non-opponents," Shaheen said.
No one should side with that puppet government: Shaheen
On India, Shaheen said the Taliban is opposing its siding with the former government, saying, "No one should...side with that puppet government." He said the group always wanted other countries, including India, to have good relations with the Afghan people and support them, instead of backing the "puppet government." Shaheen added, "They should...acknowledge the intention of the people...for the liberation of the country."
If policy is positive, our people will reciprocate: Spokesperson
When asked whether the Taliban would maintain friendly relations with India, Shaheen said that everything now depends on New Delhi's "action and policy." "Whether you adopt a hostile policy toward Afghanistan or it is a policy based on relations with the people of Afghanistan and constructive posturing. If it is positive then our people will reciprocate," the militant group's spokesperson said.
It's their humanitarian compulsion to help: Shaheen seeks foreign aid
Moreover, Shaheen urged the international community to contribute to Afghanistan's development, saying, "We just finished the war...It's a new chapter and the people of Afghanistan need help." He added the world should now support them financially to "rebuild Afghanistan." "It is also their humanitarian compulsion to come forward to help the people of Afghanistan as 70% are below the poverty line," he asserted.
Taliban to constitute constitution drafting committee after forming government
Earlier, the Taliban revealed they will not adopt a Western-style democratic political system in Afghanistan. Now, Shaheen revealed the group will constitute a committee for drafting a constitution once they form a government—when the situation in the country returns to normal. He added, "That (Parliament) building will be used for some purpose. People Shura or Islamic Shura, the building can be used for that."
Women can have education, work while following Islamic rules: Shaheen
Asked about women's protests for their rights, Shaheen said, "Women can have education and can work while following the rules of Islam...No one should worry about that." "We are committed to women's access to work. But being a Muslim, they have to follow the Hijab rule...We have announced WhatsApp numbers and they can reach them to air their grievances," the spokesperson added.
Taliban leader Mullah Akhundzada will come out soon: Shaheen
When questioned about the whereabouts of the supreme commander of the Taliban, Mullah Akhundzada, Shaheen said, "He will come very soon and will show up openly because for 20 years we have struggled against the occupation." "He had to be away from public eyes due to certain compulsions. But now he will come out Inshallah soon," added the Taliban spokesperson.