US Has ‘Leverage to Wield’ With Islamic Emirate: State Department

In reaction to the Islamic Emirate’s recent restrictions on women’s rights, a spokesman for the US Department of State said “when we’re acting with partners around the world, we have sources of leverage to wield with the Taliban.”

US Department of State spokesperson Ned Price made the remarks at a press conference on Monday and said the US has “noted that the Taliban continue to adopt policies oppressing women and girls, in many ways as a substitute for addressing the acute economic crisis and the need for inclusive government.”

He said the US has called “for an end to these restrictive measures”.

The Islamic Emirate earlier announced new rules for women’s hijab in Afghanistan—which faced widespread criticism around the world.

“We have expressed our deep dismay, we have expressed our deep concern with what we have seen from the Taliban, with what we have heard from the Taliban in recent days and in recent weeks,” he said.

But the Islamic Emirate called the new hijab ruling an internal issue and urged the US to resolve the issues through diplomatic paths.

“We call on the US to use diplomatic and formal ways to address concerns and problems instead of force,” said Inammullah Samangani, deputy spokesman for the Islamic Emirate.

This comes as the Junbish-e-Zanan Muqtadir of Afghanistan in reaction to the Islamic Emirate’s new rules for women’s hijab held a protest on Tuesday in Shahr-e-Naw of Kabul city.

They called on the Islamic Emirate to reconsider decision about the women’s hijab.

“The Afghan women will never accept the oppressive policy and ideas of a group and will fight until the last breath in this regard,” said Razia, a protestor.

Price also said the US has remained one of the largest humanitarian providers to the people of Afghanistan.

“We have provided hundreds of millions of dollars worth of humanitarian support, including an additional installment of humanitarian support recently,” he said. “We’ve spoken, of course, of the reserves, half of which will be available to the people of Afghanistan.”

According to Price, the Islamic Emirate policies towards women are “an affront” to human rights and will continue to impair their relations with the international community.