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Iran says it’s not at point of recognizing Taliban’s government

Taliban fighters in Kabul, Afghanistan, September 11, 2021. (AP Photo/Bernat Armangue)
Taliban fighters in Kabul, Afghanistan, September 11, 2021. (AP Photo/Bernat Armangue)

Iran has not reached the point of recognizing the Taliban government in neighboring Afghanistan, the foreign ministry said Monday.

“Today, we are basically not at the point of recognizing” the Taliban, foreign ministry spokesman Saeed Khatibzadeh told a news conference.

“We hope that the governing body of Afghanistan will move, through its actions, in a direction that will enable it to achieve international recognition,” he said.

“Iran and the neighboring countries of Afghanistan insist particularly on the formation of an inclusive government which reflects the ethnic and demographic diversity of this country.”

Shiite-majority Iran, which shares a 900-kilometer (550-mile) border with Afghanistan, did not recognize the Sunni movement’s rule during its 1996 to 2001 stint in power.

Already host to millions of Afghans and fearing a new influx, Tehran has sought to sketch a rapprochement with the Taliban since their lightning seizure of Kabul amid the US withdrawal last August.

The Taliban has formed an all-male cabinet made up entirely of members of the group, and almost exclusively of ethnic Pashtuns.

It has further restricted women’s rights to work and study, triggering widespread international condemnation.

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