UN drops Taliban names from sanctions list
Kabul, July 17: Fourteen former Afghan Taliban leaders have been removed from an international blacklist by the UN Security Council.
President Hamid Karzai's government had asked the UN sanctions committee to drop the names from the list.
They include four members of the High Peace Council set up last year to pave the way for talks with the Taliban.
The Security Council said the delisting of the names sent out a strong signal of support for the Afghan government's reconciliation efforts.
The sanctions were imposed in 1999, when the Taliban were in power, and were expanded after the 9/11 attacks on the US.
"The international community recognises efforts made by members of the High Peace Council to work toward peace, stability and reconciliation," Germany's UN ambassador Peter Wittig, who chairs the sanctions committee, said in a statement.
"All Afghans are encouraged to join these efforts. The message is clear: Engaging for peace pays off," he said.
But according to the Associated Press news agency, the Afghan government had wanted 50 names dropped from the blacklist.
It had provided extensive documentation to show they had reintegrated into society, but the committee refused to remove them from the list, the agency says.
Following Friday's decision, 123 names remain on the Taliban sanctions list that imposes travel bans and asset freezes.
Lastupdate on : Sun, 17 Jul 2011 21:30:00 Makkah time
Lastupdate on : Sun, 17 Jul 2011 18:30:00 GMT
Lastupdate on : Mon, 18 Jul 2011 00:00:00 IST
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