US and Taliban exchange proposals for release of funds: Reuters

by | Jul 26, 2022 | World

US and Taliban officials have exchanged proposals for the release of billions of dollars from Afghan central bank reserves held abroad into a trust fund, three sources familiar with the talks told the Reuters news agency, giving a hint of progress in efforts to ease Afghanistan’s economic crisis.Significant differences between the sides remain, however, according to two of the sources, including the Taliban’s refusal to replace the bank’s top political appointees, one of whom is under US sanctions as are several of the movement’s leaders.
Some experts said such a move would help restore confidence in the institution by insulating it from interference by the armed group that seized power a year ago but which foreign governments do not recognise.
While the Taliban do not reject the concept of a trust fund, they oppose a US proposal for third-party control of the fund that would hold and disburse returned reserves, said a Taliban government source who spoke on condition of anonymity.
The United States has been in talks with Switzerland and other parties on the creation of a mechanism that would include the trust fund, disbursements from which would be decided with the help of an international board, according to a US source who also declined to be named to discuss the matter.
A possible model could be the Afghanistan Reconstruction Trust Fund, …

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