Afghanistan: Taliban Vows To Tackle Climate Change
The Taliban has vowed to tackle climate change amid reports of executions and crackdowns on women’s rights.
As part of attempts to rebrand itself since taking over Kabul on Sunday, August 15, the militant group has announced that it is planning to tackle climate change and set out its eco credentials.
Abdul Qahar Balkhi, a member of the Taliban’s Cultural Commission of Islamic Emirate, has also announced that the Taliban is seeking global recognition.
Speaking to Newsweek, Balkhi announced the Taliban’s plans to be recognised not only by regional countries, ‘but the entire world at large as the legitimate representative government of the people of Afghanistan‘.
He noted how it was to be globally known for how it ‘gained [its] right of self-determination from a foreign occupation with the backing and support of an entire nation after a prolonged struggle and immense sacrifices despite all odds being stacked against our people’.
Balkhi also stated the militant group’s intentions to help ‘tackle the challenged not only facing us but the entire humanity’. He detailed the challenges as ranging from ‘world security and climate change’, which need the ‘collective efforts of all’.
He warned that such change would not be possible to achieve if ‘we exclude or ignore an entire people who have been devastated by imposed wars for the past four decades’.
While the Taliban has been accused of being involved in climate-harming activities, such as illicit logging and mining, Newsweek reported how the militant group has been supportive of green initiatives such as tree-planting for years. According to Newsweek, the Taliban is now in control of up to $1 trillion worth of mineral resources, estimated by the US Geological Survey.
However, the Taliban‘s vow to tackle climate change follows soon after concerns have been rising over the safety of Afghan residents. The militant group even warned that there would be ‘consequences’ if Biden delayed the withdrawal of US troops from the country past the original deadline of August 31.
There have also been fears for women’s wellbeing under the Taliban’s new regime. While it has initially appeared more progressive, with Suhail Shaheen, a spokesperson for the Taliban saying that there is nothing to be ‘worried or scared‘ about, there have been reports of violence against women.
On August 18, it was reported that a woman was shot and killed by the militant group for not wearing a burqa. Furthermore, there have been reports that Afghans have been targeted and attacked due to wearing ‘western’ clothing. Yesterday, it emerged that the Taliban was even preventing Afghans from going to the airport, which has been a scene of chaos due to thousands of people flocking to Kabul in a desperate bid to escape the country.
Boris Johnson has since put forward a large cash offer to the Islamic fundamentalist group, providing they follow a number of conditions, in a bid to secure ‘safe passage’ for those who want to leave the country even after the deadline.
An emergency G7 meeting was held by Johnson last night, August 24. A statement from G7 leaders has suggested that the money would be spent on humanitarian assistance, however Downing Street does not know how much money will be made available.
If you’d like to help those who’ve been affected by the recent devastating events unfolding in Afghanistan, you can make a donation to the UN Refugee Agency United Kingdom here.
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