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US Presses Taliban on Human Rights at Doha Talks

The US has urged Afghanistan’s ruling Taliban to “reverse policies responsible for the deteriorating human rights situation” in the country, particularly for women, girls, and “vulnerable communities”.

It also pressed for the release of detained US citizens during talks with Taliban representatives in Qatar.

The Taliban said they wanted travel restrictions lifted for their leaders.

The Islamist hardliners swept back to power in Afghanistan in August 2021.

This followed the chaotic withdrawal of US troops from the country after years of war.

The US Department of State said talks with “senior Taliban representatives and technocratic professionals” had been held over Sunday and Monday in Doha.

The US delegation “expressed support for the Afghan people’s demands for their rights to be respected and for their voices to shape the future of the country”.

The US wants the Taliban to reverse bans on secondary education for girls and employment for women.

At the same time, the US delegation “took note” of the Taliban’s “continuing commitment not to allow Afghanistan to be used as a platform for attacks on the United States and its allies”, acknowledging a “decrease in large-scale terrorist attacks against Afghan civilians”.

For their part, the Taliban said they wanted the unfreezing of Afghanistan’s assets.

The US froze $10bn (£7.8bn) of the country’s central bank assets in 2021.

For two decades, the Taliban were America’s sworn enemies.

They were ousted by the US after the 9/11 attacks but their insurgence continued to target America’s troops and their allies.

It took just days for Taliban fighters to regain Kabul as the last US troops withdrew two years ago.

No country recognises the Taliban administration but they are the de facto government.

Source : BBC