Afghans welcome liberation of Iran Port from US sanctions

Afghans welcome liberation of Iran Port from US sanctions

Officials in Afghanistan have welcomed the US decision to exempt Iran's port of Chabahar from anti-Iranian sanctions to recognize its role in building the Afghan economy.

The exception granted by the Trump administration on Tuesday allows the construction of a railway line connecting the port with Afghanistan. In addition, the war-torn country will be allowed to continue to import petroleum products from Iran.

President Ashraf Ghani's commitment to the US government "has reached its goal for Chabahar over the last six months," his spokesman tweeted Wednesday (@hchakhansuri).

On Monday, Washington re-imposed sanctions on the Iranian oil export, finance, shipping and shipbuilding sectors that had previously been lifted under the 2015 International Atomic Energy Agreement with Tehran.

The Indian-led development of Chabahar Port aims to open a new transport corridor for Afghanistan's international trade and reduce its dependence on Pakistan's land routes and seaports.

Kabul's tense relations with Islamabad are being accused of hindering Afghan trade activities by the neighboring country.

US officials argued that the sanctions on Chabahar were an exception, underscoring Washington's support for Afghanistan's economic growth and development and its close partnership with India.

The sanctions threatened, however, that New Delhi could receive funds for the development of the Iranian port. In addition, an increased uprising of the Taliban-led uprisings also poses a major challenge to international-backed efforts to stabilize and develop Afghanistan.

In recent days, insurgents have carried out new attacks across the country, killing numerous Afghan security forces and overrunning important military bases in several Afghan provinces. The Taliban control or deny almost half of Afghanistan.

The US-backed international effort to initiate a peace dialogue between the Afghan government and the Taliban has not produced any results.

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