IMF Suspends Afghanistan’s Access to Funds Amid Taliban Takeover

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) suspended Afghanistan’s access to its funds due to “lack of clarity” over the international community’s recognition of the Taliban-led government.

“As is always the case, the IMF is guided by the views of the international community. There is currently a lack of clarity within the international community regarding recognition of a government in Afghanistan,” an IMF spokesperson said in a statement.

The spokesperson added that Afghanistan additionally no longer has access to Special Drawing Rights assets, which are IMF’s units of account that can be converted to government-backed money.

Funds amounting to over $370 million had been set to arrive to Afghanistan on Aug. 23 from the IMF, which is part of the organization’s global response to the economic crisis.

The move comes after Taliban militants took over Afghanistan when they seized control of the capital, Kabul, last weekend.

Earlier, Afghan Central Bank Governor Ajmal Ahmady, who fled the war-torn country last weekend, said that the United States had cut off access to its assets, which approximately amount to $7 billion at the U.S. Federal Reserve.

“Given that the Taliban are still on international sanction lists, it is expected (confirmed?) that such assets will be frozen and not accessible to Taliban,” Ahmady said on Twitter.

“Therefore, we can say the accessible funds to the Taliban are perhaps 0.1 – 0.2% of Afghanistan’s total international reserves. Not much,” Ahmady added.

Ahmady also said that the total reserves of Da Afghanistan Bank were around $9 billion as of last week, most of which are held in safe, liquid assets as per international standards.

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