On Tuesday, the acting foreign minister for Afghanistan’s new Taliban-led government welcomed a pledge for new aid for the country.
At a UN meeting in Geneva on Monday, various countries and international aid groups pledged $1 billion in humanitarian aid for Afghanistan. Acting Foreign Minister Amir Khan Muttaqi said the Taliban would work to distribute the aid transparently.
“We ensure that the aid will be distributed transparently to the people,” Muttaqi said, according to TOLO News.
Some aid providers said they would not give the money directly to the Taliban. Instead, they will work with NGOs and aid workers on the ground. But considering the reality of who is leading the new Afghan government, some cooperation with the Taliban is necessary to distribute the aid.
Secretary of State Antony Blinken on Monday announced the US was providing $64 million in new aid to Afghanistan. But the US is still withholding about $9 billion in Afghan reserves from the new Taliban-led government, a move aid groups say is exacerbating food and cash shortages in the country.
Muttaqi said the US should release the funds and reiterated the Taliban’s call for relations with Washington. “We provided safe passage for US soldiers to leave Afghanistan, but instead of thanking us the US has frozen Afghanistan’s assets,” he said.