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Wednesday, September 22, 2021

EU blasts new Taliban-formed government as neither ‘inclusive nor representative’

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By Euronews with AFP

Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid speaks during a press conference in Kabul, Afghanistan Tuesday, Sept. 7, 2021


Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid speaks during a press conference in Kabul, Afghanistan Tuesday, Sept. 7, 2021

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Credit: AP

The European Union on Wednesday criticised the interim government formed by the Taliban in Afghanistan as neither “inclusive” nor “representative” of the country’s ethnic and religious diversity.

“It does not look like the inclusive and representative formation of Afghanistan’s rich ethnic and religious diversity that we had hoped to see and that the Taliban promised in recent weeks,” an EU spokesman said in a statement.

Key positions in Afghanistan’s new caretaker government were announced by the Taliban on Tuesday evening. The cabinet is all-male and stacked with prominent Taliban fighters who already helmed key posts during the militant group’s hardline regime between 1996 and 2001.

Mohammad Hasan Akhund, now head of Afghanistan’s interim government, previously served as foreign minister and deputy prime minister.

The new executive’s number two, Abdul Ghani Baradar, is the group’s co-founder and took part in the negotiations over the US withdrawal, while the new interior minister, Sirajuddin Haqqani, is on the FBI’s most-wanted list.

Germany has issued reservations over the new government with Foreign Minister Heiko Mass saying in a statement that “the announcement of an interim government without the participation of other groups and yesterday’s violence against female demonstrators and journalists in Kabul are not signals that make us optimistic about that.”

The announcement of the new government came however after Taliban fighters shot in the air to disperse protesters in Kabul and arrested journalists.

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