IMF has blocked Afghanistan’s access to monetary reserves as Taliban take control

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has said it has taken action to block the Taliban from getting upwards of $460 million in emergency monetary reserves that was set to be disbursed to Afghanistan.

IMF spokesperson Gerry Rice said in a statement “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, as a consequence of which the country cannot access SDRs or other IMF resources,”

A group of Republican House members wrote to Treasury Secretary Jane Yellen asking her to use America’s leverage with the IMF to keep any monetary stipends out of the hands of the Taliban.

The IMF’s program called “Special Drawing Rights” which seeks to pump $650 billion into the shutdown and pandemic ravaged global economy. Afghanistan was one of the IMF’s 190 member nations and was slated to get .07 percent of the global monetary infusion.

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“The potential of the SDR allocation to provide nearly half a billion dollars in unconditional liquidity to a regime with a history of supporting terrorist actions against the United States and her allies is extremely concerning,” wrote the GOP group, led by Rep. French Hill (R-AR).

The Republican congressmen noted that billions of IMF dollars are still slated for “state sponsors of terror, like Iran and Syria, and oppressive regimes such as China, Russia, and Belarus.”

Saying, “Since 2020, we have raised concerns over the potential for vast sums to flow to evil regimes through an SDR allocation. We have also warned about the risks of an allocation in the absence of binding accountability mechanisms,” they noted.

The IMF’s action which was taken at the behest of the US is premised on the Taliban lacking international recognition as the government of Afghanistan. If international recognition is given to the Taliban by China and Russia funding could restart despite the actions of the US or the valiant effort of these republican senators.

Full letter and press release of the Republican Senators can be accessed here:
https://hill.house.gov/news/documentsingle.aspx?DocumentID=8644

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