Washington proposes to the United Nations to facilitate humanitarian assistance in Afghanistan for a year

The United States presented a draft resolution to the UN Security Council to facilitate the delivery of humanitarian aid to Afghanistan within a year, after abandoning, under pressure from China, the idea of ​​creating a dedicated mechanism to each case for this assistance, which does not want the Taliban regime to benefit from it.

Significant changes have been made to the motion for a resolution compared to a first version rejected by China, Russia, India, France and the United Kingdom. The text was sent to the council on Monday evening and could soon be put to a vote, according to diplomats.

The position of China, which has the right of veto, as a permanent member of the UN Security Council, on this text obtained by the Agence France-Presse is not known until now.

The draft resolution states that “humanitarian assistance and other activities related to basic humanitarian needs in Afghanistan does not constitute, for a period of one year, a violation “of resolution 2255 of 2015, which imposes sanctions on entities linked to the Taliban movement.

The project states that it is permissible to “manage and pay money, financial assets or economic resources and provide goods for services necessary to guarantee tale assistance or support such activities “.

Taliban elements
Taliban elements

The text strongly encourages humanitarian “suppliers” to “reduce any direct or indirect benefit” that may benefit the persons or entities subject to sanctions. The destination of the aid will also be verified within two months of its disbursement.

Previously, China, backed by Russia, blocked a first version of a draft resolution submitted by the United States to the UN Security Council that would allow exemption from sanctions for humanitarian purposes on a case-by-case basis.

“Humanitarian aid and vital assistance should be in able to reach the Afghan people without any obstacles, “he said Monday evening in a tweet from Chinese Ambassador to the United Nations Zhang Jun, adding that “artificially created conditions or restrictions are unacceptable”.

The deletion of an entire paragraph from the first US draft, relating to the exemption mechanism for each case, has arrived in response to Chinese criticism.

The one-year limitation of the resolution, which was not mentioned in the first version of the US draft, is intended to appease Washington’s European allies who, like India, have criticized the lack of a deadline for the resolution and called for strong oversight of the care destination.

There is currently no humanitarian exception to the sanctions regime and the adoption of a similar resolution by the Security Council would allow humanitarian workers to “conduct financial transactions with ministries that are run by sanctioned persons” without violating these sanctions. , said a diplomat from the AFP agency, asking for anonymity.

Since the Taliban’s return to power in mid-August, the United States has frozen about $ 9.5 billion of Afghan Central Bank assets.

On December 10, the World Bank, which suspended assistance to Kabul at the end of August, announced that it would provide $ 280 million. in humanitarian aid to UNICEF and the World Food Program for these two agencies to distribute in Afghanistan.

However, tale amount is considered completely insufficient because this country is on the verge of financial and economic collapse. “The need for liquidity and stability in the banking system has become urgent, not only to save the Afghan people, but also to allow humanitarian organizations to operate,” said United Nations Assistant Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs Martin Griffiths. in a ministerial meeting organized by Pakistan on Sunday.

“The World Bank has released some money, but we need more ( .) and donor contributions,” a UN official said, speaking on condition of anonymity.

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