The United Nations (U.N.) says Afghanistan’s Taliban challenged the credentials of Afghanistan’s ex-U.N. ambassador and are requesting to speak at the high-level meeting of the General Assembly of U.N. consisting of world leaders that started Tuesday. Moreover, the question now facing United Nations officials comes just more than a month after the Taliban withdrew from Afghanistan by the U.S. and its coalition partners after the 9/11 attacks, after they seized Kabul as American forces prepared to pull out from the country at the August end.
Taliban ask to speak at UN General Assembly in New York: The group wants to address world leaders, weeks after ousting Afghanistan’s former government. pic.twitter.com/vwhdndgfFe
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Furthermore, the Taliban insurgents stunned the world by recapturing power with surprising speed and small resistance from the American-trained Afghan military. As a result, the Western-backed Afghan government collapsed on 15th August. Stephane Dujarric, the spokesperson of the United Nations, said Secretary-General of U.N. Antonio Guterres received communication on 15th September from the current official Afghan Ambassador, Ghulam Isaczai, with the list of the delegation of Afghanistan for the seventy-sixth annual session for the assembly.
After five days, Guterres received additional communication with the letterhead of Afghanistan’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs, signed by Minister of Foreign Affairs, Ameer Khan Muttaqi, requesting to participate in the United Nations gathering of international leaders. In the letter, Muttaqi said that Ashraf Ghani, the former Afghan President overthrew as of 15th August and that nations all over the world no longer recognize him as president. Dujarric further said that for this reason, Isaczai no longer represents the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan.
Who will be the next U.N. permanent representative of Afghanistan?
The United Nations spokesperson said that the Taliban announced that it was nominating a new permanent representative of the United Nations, Mohammad Suhail Shaheen. In addition, he has been a spokesperson for the insurgents during peace negotiations in Qatar. Senior United States State Department officials said that they were aware of the request of the Taliban – the U.S. is a member of the credentials committee of the United Nations – but they wouldn’t foresee how that panel might rule.
However, one of the G.A. officials said the committee would take a spell of time to deliberate, suggesting the diplomat of Taliban wouldn’t be able to speak at the G.N. at this session, at least during the week of high-level leaders. In cases of clashes over seats at the U.N., the nine-member credentials committee of the General Assembly meets to make a decision. The members of the committee are the United States, China, Sweden, Bhutan, Russia, Chile, Sierra Leone, Chile, and Bahama.
Afghanistan is scheduled to give the last speech on the last day of the high-level meeting on 27th September. But it was not clear who would speak in if the committee met and the Taliban leaders were given Afghanistan’s seat in General Assembly. During the previous rule of the Taliban from 1996 to 2001, the United Nations refused to recognize their government and instead gave the seat of Afghanistan to the previous president Burhanuddin Rabbani, who finally killed in a suicide attack in 2011. The government of Rabbani brought Osama bin Laden, the brain behind the 9/11 attacks, to Afghanistan from Sudan in 1996.
Taliban want International Recognition
Afghanistan’s Taliban leaders said that they want global recognition and also financial aid to rebuild the country. However, the establishment of the new Taliban government poses a problem for the U.N. Many of the Afghan interim ministers are on the blacklist of the United Nations. Credentials Committee members could also use the recognition of the Taliban as leverage to influence a more comprehensive government that guarantees basic human rights, especially for women who were barred from getting an education and go to work during the Taliban’s previous rule.