Norway Refugee Council Chief says European Envoys should return to Kabul

KABUL (TOLONews): The Secretary General of the Norwegian Refugee Council, Jan Egeland, said that he is lobbying for his country’s ambassador — as well other European ambassadors — to return to Afghanistan.
In an interview with TOLOnews’ Hamid Bahram, Egeland said that Norway has recognized Afghanistan “for a very long time” and that regimes have come and gone but Oslo has recognized the country. “In diplomacy. You don’t recognize regimes or governments — you recognize countries. My country — Norway — has recognized Afghanistan for a very long time… regimes have come and gone, governments have come and gone but we recognized Afghanistan and our ambassador should come very soon. I am lobbying for that. I am lobbying for the European ambassadors to come back… I am glad to see the European Union already. They should come and engage with the Taliban authorities,” he said.
Egeland, who also visited Kandahar, said that the Islamic Emirate’s official told him that the ban of girls’ education will be lifted with “guidelines.”
“They told me two things. Number one that the ban on female education and female work in humanitarian organizations is going to be lifted through the issue of guidelines and that these guidelines were nearly finished. So we are hoping to see the guidelines very soon, so we can restart work with the female colleagues across Afghanistan and girls can come back to secondary school to other schools—to universities,” Egeland said.
He suggested that the suspension of aid due to the “Taliban’s policies” is politicizing humanitarian assistance. “When people say I dislike the Taliban … so we have to withdraw money from Afghanistan, I think that is politicizing aid because the aid is there to for the poorest of the poor, for the hungry, etc… they should engage with the Taliban leadership and tell them like I do that we disagree. Engagement is much better than withdrawal of aid to the poorest,” he said.