Tue, 26 Oct 2021

Kabul [Afghanistan], September 22 (ANI): Taliban on Tuesday announced the expansion of cabinet ministers with no women representation in the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan.

As per Zabihullah Mujahid, the Deputy Minister for Information and Culture said that new members of the caretaker cabinet of the Taliban were announced in an effort to ensure inclusivity by adding "minorities" to the cabinet, reported Tolo News.

The new members of the caretaker cabinet are - Haji Nooruddin Azizi, acting minister of commerce; Haji Mohammad Bashir, deputy minister commerce; Haji Mohammad Azim Sultanzada, deputy minister of commerce; Qalandar Ebad, acting minister of public health; Abdulbari Omar, deputy minister of public health; Mohammad Hassan Ghiasi, deputy minister of public health; Mullah Mohammad Ibrahim, deputy minister of interior affairs for security; Mullah Abdul Qayyum Zakir, deputy minister of defense; Nazar Mohammad Mutmaeen, acting head of the National Olympic Committee; Mujiburrahman Omar, deputy minister of energy and water; Ghulam Ghaws, deputy minister of disasters management; Mohammad Faqir, acting chairman of Central Statistics Authority; Haji Gul Mohammad, deputy minister borders and tribal affairs; Gul Zarin Kochai, deputy minister of borders and tribal affairs; Arsala Kharoti, deputy minister of refugees and repatriation affairs; Lotfullah Khairkhwa, deputy minister of higher education; and Najibullah, director of the Nuclear Energy Department.

The new list also does not include any women. Earlier, when the Taliban had announced its list of 33 cabinet ministers, it did not include any women.

When asked about the women's affairs ministry and girls' education, Mujahid said the caretaker cabinet is working to address women's demands for work and education, reported Tolo News.

"We are working to complete the procedures so that girls can resume their education," he said.

Mujahid also announced that the inauguration ceremony for the new government was cancelled due to their focus on providing service to the people at this point.

Responding to a question on the status of the new cabinet, Mujahid expressed his hope that the international community will recognize their cabinet in near future, reported Tolo News.

Mujahid also talked about the country's economic situation and said that the domestic revenues might be enough for basic needs.

"We are using all diplomatic channels to unfreeze the Afghan assets," Mujahid said.

Meanwhile, figures by watchdog organizations show that 153 media outlets have stopped operation in the last month for various reasons, including lack of access to information and budget issues, reported Tolo News.

However, Mujahid vowed that the Afghan media will be allowed to operate.

"Media are important and we support the media. There have been some problems in provinces that are being addressed," he added.

He also said the Kabul airport's main radar was badly damaged and international commercial flights will resume after it is repaired. He added that helicopters at the Kabul airport were destroyed "by American soldiers." (ANI)

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