UNSC renews anti-terror sanctions regime in Afghanistan

United Nations, Dec 22 (IANS) UN Security Council renewed sanctions regime against terrorist groups in Afghanistan while expressing its strong concern about its security situation.

In an unanimously adopted resolution, the council on Monday expressed its strong concern about the security situation in Afghanistan, in particular the ongoing violent and terrorist activities by the Taliban, Al-Qaeda, and the strong links between terrorism and insurgency activities and illicit drugs, Xinhua reported.

The council also expressed concern about the increasing presence and future potential growth of extremist IS affiliates in Afghanistan.

The council extended the sanctions regime, which maintains an assets freeze, travel ban and arms embargo on designated individuals and entities.

However, the resolution recognised that the security situation in Afghanistan has evolved and that some members of the Taliban have reconciled with Afghanistan government and support a peaceful resolution to the continuing conflict in the country.

Therefore, the council expressed “its intention to give due regard to lifting sanctions on those who reconcile,” said the resolution.

Moreover, on combating terrorist financing, the resolution called on parties concerned to “freeze without delay the funds and other financial assets or economic resources” of the individuals, groups, undertakings and entities in the 1988 sanctions list according to the resolution 1988 (2011).

Earlier on Monday, the Secretary-General’s Special Representative for Afghanistan, Nicholas Haysom, briefed the Security Council.

He commended the National Unity Government for advancing its political agenda, including the implementation of the terms of the September 2014 agreement, and for continuing to put into place the building blocks for long-term economic improvement, said Farhan Haq, deputy spokesman for the secretary-general.

Haysom said that Afghanistan, which continues to confront countless challenges, has made it through its first post-transitional year — an achievement in itself, Haq said.

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