Will Moscow shake hands with the Taliban?
29 August 2021 | 8:23 am
Russia has reacted calmly to the changeover of power in Afghanistan. It was better prepared than the West for the Taliban takeover. It may even recognize the leadership of the terrorist militia.
Is tying humanitarian assistance to human rights the right course for Afghanistan? Aid agencies are this week imploring the West and in particular the US Treasury to allow money transfers to flow unhindered and to unblock desperately needed funds.
We focus on the plight of women in Afghanistan six months after the Taliban retook the country. For those women and girls left behind, many have found their lives shrunk to the four walls of their homes, either due to losing their jobs or being unable to continue their education. This as a number of women's rights activists have gone missing in recent weeks as the Taliban continue to seek international recognition.
The Pul-e-Sukhta bridge in Kabul is synonymous with hard drug use. After many NGOs and charities fled Afghanistan, drug addicts have been largely left on their own. And the number of users is swelling, residents say.
In an interview with FRANCE 24, Russia's Permanent Representative to the European Union denied that the six Russian naval ships in the Black Sea have anything to do with Ukraine. Vladimir A. Chizhov also insisted that Moscow has no intention to make a move on Ukrainian territory and reiterated that the Kremlin is committed to a diplomatic outcome to the crisis.
Diplomacy continues in a bid to resolve the Ukraine crisis. This Monday, German Chancellor Olaf Scholz went to Kiev to meet with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenksy. This as a ring of Russian troops tightens around Ukraine.
Six months after the Taliban retook Afghanistan, FRANCE 24 spoke to former Afghan president Hamid Karzai, who remains in the country. Karzai strongly criticised the Biden administration's recent decision to unfreeze Afghan assets but divide the funds between aid to Afghanistan and victims of the 9/11 attacks, saying the funds "belong to the Afghan people". He also said he believed the Taliban would eventually allow girls to return to school, since doing so is "absolutely necessary for the well-being" of Afghanistan.
Germany has urged Russia to come back to the negotiating table as Russian media reported "no concrete plans" were in place for Putin to meet Biden.
The White House is warning that Russia could be planning a chemical or biological weapon attack in Ukraine. Washington says it's "very concerned" about the potential for the war to escalate and the possibility that Moscow may deploy non-conventional weapons. To discuss this and more, we're joined for Perspective by Edward Arnold, a research fellow for European security at the Royal United Services Institute think tank in London.
The war in Ukraine continues to rage while Ukrainian and Russian negotiators talk. Experts say that for now neither side is ready for a breakthrough and fear that the war will last a very long time.
The Taliban has sparked outrage and concern among rights groups, after it reversed stance and closed secondary schools for girls across Afghanistan. Thousands of young students were sent home, confused and worried about their future.
The Taliban is cracking down on foreign media in Afghanistan. DW programming rebroadcast by partners in Pashto and Dari will be banned. The BBC said that bulletins in Pashto, Persian and Uzbek have been removed.
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