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Islamic bloc not willing to channel Afghan assistance through Taliban

New Delhi, Dec 20, 2021- The Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) has set up a humanitarian fund to be operated by the Islamic Development Bank (IDB) to help avert the humanitarian and economic crises in Afghanistan, The Express Tribune reported.

Pakistan Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi admitted that another reason the fund was set up was because some of the member countries were not willing to channel assistance through the Taliban government, the report said.

The announcement of the fund was part of the measures the 57-member Islamic bloc agreed upon after the 17th Extraordinary Session of the Council of Foreign Ministers of OIC hosted by Pakistan.

However, it is unclear if the decisions made by the OIC will make an immediate impact on the ground in Afghanistan, which is in dire need of humanitarian assistance, the report said.

The humanitarian fund would channel financial assistance to be provided by member states to Afghanistan.

The reason the trust fund has been set up is to establish a channel through which assistance could be provided to the people of Afghanistan.

Currently, because of the sanctions imposed by the US and other Western countries, there are no formal banking channels or financial system operating in Afghanistan, the report added.

In the absence of formal banking channels, the countries interested in helping the people of Afghanistan are finding it difficult to do so.

Qureshi, who held a joint news conference along with OIC Secretary General Hissein Brahim Taha, said the establishment of a trust fund would help address that problem.

However, no pledges or donations were made yet to the newly created fund as Qureshi said the fund was just announced and hopefully member countries would start contributing to it soon.  (Agency)

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