The humanitarian and economic crises unfolding in Afghanistan are increasing the migratory pressure on neighboring countries, Foreign Minister MevlÃ¼t ÃavuÅoÄlu said on Sunday.
Speaking at the 17th extraordinary session of the Council of Foreign Ministers of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) in Islamabad, ÃavuÅoÄlu said that the OIC should continue to cooperate with international organizations such as the High United Nations Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) and the International Organization for Migration (IOM) to support displaced people.
Turkey’s top diplomat called on the OIC to mobilize international support for Afghanistan and play a leading role in it.
âWe believe that the active engagement regarding Afghanistan of Asian countries, including Pakistan, Iran, Uzbekistan, Turkmenistan, Indonesia and Malaysia, is very important. We need to take more action and play a leading role as an Islamic community, âhe said.
ÃavuÅoÄlu suggested that a joint visit of OIC foreign ministers to Kabul would serve as a manifestation of solidarity with the Afghan people.
“First of all, we need to coordinate humanitarian aid,” he said, thanking Pakistan for facilitating the transfer of aid to the conflict-ridden country.
He stressed that the economic collapse of Afghanistan must be avoided and that the sanctions negatively affect the financial system.
“If these financial resources do not reach the Afghan people, the commitments we have made will be meaningless. We must immediately implement the solutions regarding the financial resources and thus resolve the resources in cash and bank transfers,” he said. he added. .
The emergency in Afghanistan, with millions facing hunger as winter approaches, has sparked growing concern, but the international community has struggled to find a coordinated response given Western reluctance to help. the Taliban government, which took power in August.
The two-day meeting in Islamabad also includes representatives of the United Nations and international financial institutions, as well as world powers such as the United States, the European Union and Japan.
The Taliban’s acting foreign minister, Amir Khan Muttaqi, is also present, although so far no country has officially recognized the new administration in Kabul.
Taliban officials have called for help to rebuild Afghanistan’s devastated economy and feed more than 20 million people at risk of hunger. Some countries and aid organizations started providing aid, but a virtual collapse of the country’s banking system made it difficult for them to do their jobs.
Beyond immediate aid, Afghanistan needs help to ensure long-term economic stability. Much will depend on Washington’s willingness to lift sanctions against Taliban leaders who have pushed many institutions and governments to avoid direct relations with their government.
“Unless action is taken immediately, Afghanistan is heading for chaos,” Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan said in his opening speech, adding that a refugee crisis and further violence by Daesh could ensue. âChaos is not for anyone,â he said.
Turkey’s top diplomat stressed that an inclusive Afghan government and collaboration with the Taliban are vital for stability.
âWe must continue to support the current government and advise it to be inclusive, to protect the rights of everyone and at the same time to expand the access of women and girls to employment and education.
ÃavuÅoÄlu also met Muttaqi on the sidelines of the OIC meeting.
No nation has yet officially recognized the Taliban government, and diplomats face the delicate task of channeling aid into the ailing Afghan economy without supporting the Taliban.
The Turkish government has taken a pragmatic approach to the recent events in Afghanistan. Stressing that new realities have emerged in Afghanistan, Ankara said it will move forward accordingly while keeping open communication with all relevant actors. The Taliban say they want international recognition but warn their weakening government will affect security and trigger an even larger exodus of migrants from the country. Taliban officials have previously expressed their desire for Turkey to provide aid and support to the Afghan people. NATO member Turkey has maintained its embassy in Afghanistan after the withdrawal of Western countries following the Taliban takeover and urged those countries to step up their engagement. At the same time, he said he would only function fully with the Taliban if they formed a more inclusive administration.
The Taliban, which was last in power in 2001, declared an amnesty against former government officials and said they would never allow Afghanistan to be used as a base for attacks on other countries.
But they have come under heavy criticism for preventing women and girls from accessing jobs and education, excluding large sections of Afghan society from the government, and have been accused of flouting human rights as well as targeting former officials despite their promise of amnesty.
Likewise, Pakistani Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi said the worsening crisis could lead to mass hunger, an influx of refugees and a rise in extremism.
Qureshi said the OIC was urged to consider a six-point plan to help Afghanistan that would engage with the Taliban authorities to help ease pressure on the country.
This would include coordinating aid, increasing investment, helping rebuild Afghan institutions, and providing technical experts to manage the economy.
Any promise of help was to be announced on Sunday evening.