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Human rights situation, Afghan economy discussed during US-Taliban talks in Doha

Doha [Qatar], August 1 (ANI): As US officials and the Taliban hold direct talks with each other in Doha, the keynote points of discussion remained the deteriorating human rights situation in Afghanistan and the country's faltering economy.

According to the US Department of State, the Special Representative for Afghanistan Thomas West, alongside Special Envoy for Afghan Women, Girls, and Human Rights Rina Amiri, and Chief of the US Mission to Afghanistan based in Doha Karen Decker, led a US delegation to continue discussions regarding critical interests with senior Taliban representatives and technocratic professionals in Doha, Qatar from July 30-31.

During the talks with the Taliban representatives, the American delegation emphasised its grave concern about the humanitarian catastrophe and the need to keep supporting UN agencies and aid organisations that provide aid in accordance with humanitarian principles in Afghanistan.

"U.S. officials urged the Taliban to reverse policies responsible for the deteriorating human rights situation in Afghanistan, particularly for women, girls, and vulnerable communities," the US State Department said in an official release.

The US officials further expressed deep concern over detentions, media repression, and restrictions on religious practice.

The Afghan people's demands that their rights be upheld and that their voices be heard in deciding the future of the nation were supported by the United States during the discussions with the Taliban in Doha.

Further, the talks also focused on the stabilisation of the economy in Afghanistan which is on a decline since the Taliban seized power in August 2021 in Kabul.

"The American delegation met with representatives of the Afghan Central Bank and Afghan Ministry of Finance to discuss the state of the Afghan economy and the challenges that the banking sector faces. U.S. officials took note of recent data indicating declining inflation, growth of merchandise exports and imports in Afghanistan in 2023, and voiced openness to a technical dialogue regarding economic stabilization issues soon," the State Department release read.

In addition to discussing Taliban attempts to uphold security agreements, the US officials noted the Taliban's ongoing commitment to not allowing anyone to use Afghan territory to threaten the country's friends and the United States.

The release underlined that the US officials registered serious concerns regarding continuing trafficking and sale of processed opiates and synthetic drugs.

"The American delegation voiced openness to continue dialogue on counternarcotics," it added.

Since the Taliban took control of Afghanistan in August 2021, the situation of people, especially women in Afghanistan has only deteriorated as the country is under a massive humanitarian crisis.

People continue to face food shortages, and the basic amenities to live have become a far cry for all. Moreover, the situation of women in the country has only got worse.

Women in the country are prohibited from leadership posts, and not allowed to work as well as travel unless accompanied by a male companion. There is still no word on when or if these schools will reopen or if the ban is indefinite.

The US and the Taliban signed the peace agreement in February 2020 under the Presidency of former US President Donald Trump. The deal stated the withdrawal of the US troops from Afghan soil and the Taliban would abate violence and guarantee that its soil will not be a safe haven for the terrorists. (ANI)