What did the UN Secretary-General’s Special Representative say about Afghanistan’s situation to the Security Council?

by Aamaj News

Today, January 26, the UN Secretary-General’s Special Representative for Afghanistan, Ms. Deborah Lyons, delivered her speech about ongoing situation of Afghanistan.

Ms. Lyons said that by the end of 2021, almost 18 billion Afghans were provided with life saving assistance. But humanitarian needs continue to be pressing.

She emphasizing the dire humanitarian situation in Afghanistan, said, “the approximately one billion US dollars that we asked for last year to address the humanitarian crisis now must be supplemented by 4.4 billion in additional humanitarian assistance for 2022 as set out in our recent appeal.”

The UN Secretary-General’s Special Representative for Afghanistan said that they have launched a new One-UN Transitional Engagement Framework for Afghanistan, for which they are seeking an additional 3.6 billion dollars. This brings the total ask for 2022 to eight billion dollars. She added this comprehensive and system-wide strategy introduces a Basic Human Needs pillar to deliver essential services such as health and education, as well as provide maintenance for community infrastructure, and promote livelihoods and social cohesion, with a special emphasis on the socio-economic needs of women and girls.

Ms. Lyons said that it is understandable that donors last fall were hesitant to engage in ways that might help the Taliban authorities consolidate their administration or appear to legitimize the regime. But their hesitancy has been temporarily overcome in order to help the Afghan people, who were suffering from an extended humanitarian crisis and facing this brutal winter.

She welcoming and quoting this communiqué regarding Oslo talks, “understanding and joint cooperation amongst Afghans are the only solutions to all the problems of Afghanistan” thanked prime minister of Norway for his timely initiative.

But she expressed her grave concern on emerging environment of intimidation and a deterioration in respect for human rights in Afghanistan. She added that Taliban may be leading toward control of the population by fear, rather than by understanding and responding to its needs. 

“Despite announcements of general amnesties for those who worked for or defended the former Government, we continue to receive credible allegations of killings, enforced disappearances, and other violations that are not being addressed by the judiciary. In addition, we are seeing a growing number of detentions of political opponents, civil society representatives and those who voice dissent,” Ms.Lyons said.

She appointing to abduction of female activists said that no Afghan should live in fear of a knock at their door in the night and no family should be left to wonder about whereabouts and fate of loved ones.

Once again she renewed the commitment of the UN to support Afghan people, and asked for releasing of Afghan frozen assets. She also called on Taliban to keep their promises on forming an inclusive government and respecting human and in particular women’s rights.

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