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US Rules Out Releasing $3.5 Billion to Afghanistan’s Taliban-Controlled Central Bank

Taliban take to the streets during a national holiday celebrating the first anniversary of the Taliban takeover in Kabul, on Aug. 15. 

Taliban take to the streets during a national holiday celebrating the first anniversary of the Taliban takeover in Kabul, on Aug. 15. 

Photographer: Paula Bronstein/Getty Images

The US has no plans to release $3.5 billion in frozen funds to Afghanistan’s Taliban-controlled central bank, but will look for ways to benefit the country’s people directly, State Department spokesman Ned Price said.

“We don’t see recapitalization of the Afghan central bank as a near-term option,” Price told a briefing. He said the US doesn’t have confidence that the bank will use the money wisely or keep it from falling into the hands of terrorists.