The Taliban group has warned that the coronavirus is threatening at least 40,000 prisoners across Afghanistan as the group called on international health and rights organizations to seriously consider the condition of prisons in Afghanistan.

The group issued a statement, expressing concerns regarding the lack of cleanliness and health facilities in prisons, warning that the spread of coronavirus spread in Afghan jails could result into a major humanitarian disaster.

The statement further added that the Afghan government would be responsible in the event of disaster in Afghan jails.

This comes as Taliban group is awaiting the release of at least 5,000 prisoners from Afghan jails following the signing of a peace deal with the United States late last month.

The Afghan government however opposed the release of all 5,000 prisoners and President Mohammad Ashraf Ghani issued a decree earlier this week stating that the government would conditionally release the prisoners in three stages with the first batch of 1,500 prisoners to be released on 14th March.

On the other hand, the public health authorities have reported 21 positive cases of coronavirus in Afghanistan.

The Public Health Ministry said it has recorded five new positive cases of coronavirus in three provinces of the country in the past 24 hours.

Wahidullah Mayar, a spokesperson for the Ministry of Public Health confirmed that two of the new cases have surfaced in western Herat province, bringing the total number of the positive cases to 12.

The authorities have also recorded two more positive cases in central Logar province while the fifth new case has surfaced in northwestern Badghis province.

The officials say they have so far recorded 21 positive cases of coronavirus in seven provinces of Afghanistan.


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