Afghan quake: Taliban urges US to unfreeze funds

New Delhi: The Taliban urged the United States to unfreeze Afghanistan’s foreign funds and lift financial sanctions to help the war-ravaged country deal with its deadliest earthquake yet which killed more than 1000 people.

Taliban Foreign Minister Amir Khan Muttaqi, while speaking to reporters in Kabul, said, “In these testing times, we call on the United States to release Afghanistan’s frozen assets and lift sanctions on Afghan banks so that aid agencies can easily deliver assistance to Afghanistan.”

Meanwhile, US President Joe Biden in February had signed an executive order to free up half the $7 billion in frozen Afghan central bank assets on US soil, splitting the money between humanitarian aid for Afghanistan and to possibly satisfy terrorism-related lawsuits against the Taliban, Voice of America reported.

According to Taliban officials, the earthquake killed 1,150 people, injured about 1,600, and destroyed nearly 3,000 homes, with hundreds more partially damaged. According to UNICEF, at least 121 children were among those killed and the toll is likely to increase.

Image courtesy of (Photo: Wikipedia)

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