Jakarta/Kabul, Jul 25 (EFE).- A member of the Taliban recently visited Indonesia to strengthen political and economic ties between Kabul and Jakarta, the Indonesian foreign ministry confirmed to EFE on Tuesday.
Indonesian foreign ministry spokesperson Teuku Faizasyah told EFE that a Taliban delegate had visited Jakarta informally to meet the Afghan representative in the city.
The Taliban representative visited the Afghan mission in Indonesia and “held useful meetings and discussions with some scholars, politicians, and businessmen in Indonesia to strengthen the bilateral political and economic relations,” the Afghan foreign ministry said in a statement.
Other issues under discussion included “the prohibition of drug cultivation and trafficking, and the security situation in Afghanistan,” it added.
The statement, dated Jul. 14, did not specify the exact dates of the visit, although Asian media has reported that it took place in early July.
Nikkei Asia reported that the Taliban envoy also visited Malaysia.
This was an unusual foreign visit by the Taliban since the Islamist group’s return to power in Afghanistan in August 2021, as it tries to boost its international stature.
Indonesia, a historically liberal Muslim country which has been witnessing a rise in radical Islamism, does not recognize the Taliban regime.
Although being rare and selective, Taliban’s international exchanges seem to be on the rise: in May the foreign affairs minister Amir Khan Muttaqi and trade minister Haji Nooruddin Azizi visited Pakistan’s Islamabad to discuss ties.
In recent months, Taliban delegations have also toured countries such as Uzbekistan and Turkmenistan to discuss border issues, along with Qatar, which had hosted their talks with the European Union and the United States.
In June, Qatari Prime Minister Mohammed bin Abdulrahman bin Jassim visited Afghanistan’s Kandahar province to meet a major leader of the Taliban movement, marking his first visit to the country under the current regime.
As part of its role as the mediator, in early May Qatar had hosted a United Nations summit to discuss the situation in Afghanistan, even as recognition by the international community remains elusive for the Taliban government. EFE