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EU urges Taliban to halt fighting amid pandemic fears

AT News

KABUL: The Presidential Palace has praised the European Union’s offer to the Taliban to observe ceasefire for humanitarian aid amid a pandemic coronavirus outbreak.

The European Union’s envoy for Afghanistan, Rolan Kobia in a tweet has called on the Taliban to accept a full ceasefire and stop taxing humanitarian aids in order to ensure help to the Afghan people.

He underscored the remarks in reaction to the Taliban’s spokesman, Sulail Shaheen, who had assured the international health organizations and WHO of cooperation to counter the spread of coronavirus in Afghanistan.

“Everyone has the right to be helped against coronavirus. To be better helped, first measures should be: full ceasefire, stop taxing humanitarian aid, ensure full access & safety, coordinate & cooperate with Government,” Kobia said.

Shaheen has also called on the health and humanitarian organizations to pay attention to their prisoners’ health, which are spending their prison term in the Afghanistan’s prisons.

Praising the statement of the European Union’s envoy, a Presidential Aid Waheed Omer said that the Taliban should halt their attacks and allow the health employees to take their implementation against coronavirus all over Afghanistan. “We welcome the EU call for a ceasefire on humanitarian grounds. Taliban should know that we are dealing with a humanitarian situation caused by the coronavirus,” he added. Omer said that the Taliban are posing obstacles against the health services in some parts of the country and that should be immediately stopped.

The Taliban, who were fighting against the Afghan and US forces during past 18 years, have recently reached a peace deal with Washington, rolling a gradual reduction of foreign troops and direct-Afghan talks. But the group now has insisted on releasing of its 5,000 prisoners prior to negotiation with the Afghan government.   

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