Markus Potzel, the Acting Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General for Afghanistan, stated that the Taliban seek legitimacy and recognition based on their territorial domination rather than by upholding the norms and standards of the international community.
Potzel stated in his briefing to the UN Security Council (UNSC) that the lack of recognition of the Taliban by any country to this point is due to several obvious reasons, including a failure to uphold international norms.
The UNSC held a session on Afghanistan on August 29, focusing on the social and economic situation in Afghanistan.
The Acting United Nations Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA) head, Potzel, said, “Afghanistan is part of this international system and the Taliban need to adhere to their international obligations.”
The UN official enumerated the standards set by the international community for representative government, collective international security, and women’s and girls’ rights, all of which the Taliban government appears to violate and struggle with.
Noting that the provision of humanitarian aid to the impoverished people of Afghanistan is not a “long-term solution”, Potzel stated that measures should be put in place to allow the Afghan economy “breathe”, including efforts to facilitate access to the held reserves.
The Taliban government, according to Potzel, is dealing with more and more challenges with governance as they portray themselves as a unified, integrated governing body, yet with rumors of internal tensions.
He also pointed at the curtailed fundamental human rights, especially the suspension of the schools for girls and the draconian policies in place for Afghan women, noting that “Afghanistan is the only country in the world that denies girls the full right to education.”
The Taliban, other Afghan stakeholders, the broader region, and the international community should engage in a continuous discourse with the goals of all Afghans at the forefront, he recommended, rather than exchanging rigid stances.