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 - Sputnik International, 1920, 07.09.2021
Afghanistan
The future appears uncertain for Afghanistan following its takeover by the Taliban as US-led forces withdrew from the country after 20 years of occupation. As other nations continue to evacuate their citizens, the Central Asian country has been struck by political and humanitarian crises.

Afghan Central Bank Says Recovered $12.3 Million Previously Owned by Ex-Gov't Officials

© REUTERS / DA AFGHANISTAN BANKMen are pictured as Afghanistan's Taliban-controlled central bank seizes a large amount of money in cash and gold from former top government officials, including former vice president Amrullah Saleh, in Afghanistan, in this handout obtained by Reuters on September 15, 2021
Men are pictured as Afghanistan's Taliban-controlled central bank seizes a large amount of money in cash and gold from former top government officials, including former vice president Amrullah Saleh, in Afghanistan, in this handout obtained by Reuters on September 15, 2021 - Sputnik International, 1920, 15.09.2021
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Former officials of the Afghan government have been accused of unlawfully appropriating cash and valuable goods, among them, in particular, ex-Afghan President Ashraf Ghani. He has denied the allegations.
The Central Bank of Afghanistan on Wednesday said that the Taliban had seized over $12 million in cash and gold from the homes of ex-government officials.
Among these officials, according to the statement, is former Vice President, Amrullah Saleh.

"A certain amount of cash found at the residence of Mr. Amrullah Saleh, the first Vice-President of the previous government and a number of previous high ranking government officials was submitted to Da Afghanistan Bank by the authorities of the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan", the statement by the bank said. "The total of the aforementioned cash amounts to USD twelve million three hundred sixty-eight thousand two hundred forty-six (12368246) and a number of gold bricks most of which were found at Amrullah Saleh’s residence".

The bank said that the purpose for which the money was kept in the homes of ex-government officials was not immediately clear.
The statement comes as the bank urged government and non-government organisations to use the Afghan currency in their contracts and economic transactions, amid reported financial troubles that the Taliban-seized country is facing.
According to the AFP, most government employees are yet to return to work, and many people have not received salaries for months, consequently struggling to make ends meet. Local banks are reportedly limiting withdrawals to the equivalent of $200 a week, prompting large queues.
While international remittances have been resumed, customers are reportedly complaining that international chains such as Western Union and MoneyGram are running out of cash.
Amid the country's struggle without the financial aid from international donors and calls for the resumption thereof, former Afghan President Ashraf Ghani is facing accusations of appropriating millions of dollars belonging to the Afghan people. He has denied the allegations, saying that he would welcome a UN financial investigation of the matter.
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