260 Afghan Sikhs stranded in Kabul Gurdwara

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So far, only India has helped evacuation of Afghan Sikhs after the takeover of the country by the Taliban, reports Asian Lite News

Over 260 Sikhs have taken shelter at Gurdwara Karte Parwan in Kabul and need help in their evacuation, a US Sikh body has said.

“There are more than 260 Afghan citizens left at Gurudwara Karte Parwan in Kabul including women and over 50 children. This includes three newborns with one born yesterday,” United Sikhs said in a statement.

So far, only India has helped evacuation of Afghan Sikhs after the takeover of the country by the Taliban.

“We are in communication with governments in the United States, Canada, Pakistan, Australia, New Zealand, Tajikistan, Iran and the United Kingdom among others,” the United Sikhs said.

“We are also in communication with international aid agencies and non-governmental organizations trying to support rescue efforts in Afghanistan. In addition, our teams are communicating with companies that can execute rescue efforts on the ground in Afghanistan,” it said.

According to the United Sikhs, the 10-kilometer drive to the international airport in Kabul from Gurdwara Karte Parwan through various checkpoints is one of the biggest challenges in the rescue efforts. Few Afghan minority members have unsuccessfully attempted to make this trip last week, it said.

“We are ready to go to the airport, but we fear the cancellation of evacuation flights from the Kabul airport. This is our only chance to take out the women, children, elderly, and infants from the country. Once current authorities capture the whole country it will be the end of our community,” said Surbeer Singh from Jalalabad who has taken refuge at the Gurdwara.

New govt to be announced soon, says Taliban

Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid announced that talks on the formation of a new government with Afghan political leaders were underway and that a new government will be announced soon.

“Our political officials met with leaders here in Kabul, their views are important, discussions are moving, there is hope for an announcement on the government soon,” TOLO News quoted Mujahid as saying on Sunday.

Meanwhile, members of the Taliban’s political office on Saturday met in Kabul with a number of politicians including former President Hamid Karzai and Abdullah Abdullah, the head of High Council for National Reconciliation (HCNR), and discussions focused on the overall political situation including the formation of an inclusive government.

The members of the Taliban’s political office who arrived in Kabul on Saturday include Shahabuddin Delawar, Abdul Salam Hanafi, Mullah Khairullah Khairkhaw and Abdul Rahmand Fida.

Abdullah in a Facebook post confirmed the meeting with the Taliban leaders, saying that discussions were focused on the political process and the formation of an inclusive government.

Some Afghan political leaders, however, criticised the way the talks are taking place, saying that the political process should be inclusive.

“I don’t see this game as a good one because it looks like a game of individuals, everyone tries to promote himself and does not show respect for the Afghans,” said Sayed Eshaq Gailani, the head of the Nahzat-e-Hambastagi Afghanistan party.

In the meantime, Atta Mohammad Noor, the former governor of Balkh, said that the next government will not be acceptable if it is not inclusive.

“The war has not ended, we have a long way to go, we will test them (the Taliban), we will emerge again either to resolve it through an inclusive government or war.”

Taliban evicted from 3 districts in Baghlan

Public uprising forces have evicted Taliban fighters from three districts in Afghanistan’s northern Baghlan province, but the insurgents managed to recapture one of them, local media reported.

The anti-Taliban fighters seized Pul-e-Hisar, Deh Salah and Banu districts on August 20, but the Taliban recaptured Banu on August 21, and fighting is underway to re-take two more districts.

After gaining control of the capital Kabul on August 15, the Taliban fighters captured the said districts and thus completed its rule over Baghlan province.

This is the first uprising against the Taliban since Kabul was captured by the group. Taliban fighters have already strengthened its rule over the country’s 33 out of 34 provinces.

Panjshir is the only province that has remained out of Taliban’s grip, where Ahmad Massoud, the son of former anti-Taliban leader Ahmad Shah Massoud, has challenged the Taliban rule over the country.

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