Latest news and happenings of Afghanistan and region…
Participants at a UN-backed seminar at Kunduz University underscored the crucial importance of human rights for peace and stability, and highlighted the special role of young people as constructive agents of change in promoting and protecting rights.
As per the UNAMA report, the university event was the final in a series of seminars facilitated by UNAMA’s Kunduz regional office to enable faculty and students to discuss international and national principles related to human rights provisions, with a specific focus on Afghanistan.
“During the discussion, panelists stressed the important relationship between human rights, peace and stability, and encouraged university students to advocate for the protection of human rights in the country,” the report said.
The discussion focused on the theme of this year’s Human Rights Day ‘Youth Stand Up for Human Rights’ to highlight the role of young people as constructive agents of change, to amplify their voices and to engage a broad range of audiences in the promotion and protection of human rights.
The UN’s ‘Youth Stand Up for Human Rights’ campaign this year is designed to encourage and galvanize youth, and to showcase how young people all over the world are standing up for human rights, including against racism, hate speech, injustice, discrimination and war.
Afghanistan General Attorney (AGO) has announced that at least 114 prisoners have been released from jails in Herat and Badghis Provinces.
AGO in a press release on Thursday said that the inmates have been released based on a Presidential decree on the occasion of the birthday of Prophet Muhammad (PBUH).
According to the press release, the released prisoners were jailed for various offenses and sentenced to less than five years imprisonment.
President Ashraf Ghani has approved a suggestion from the Ministry of Culture and Information regarding assistance to Afghan artists, including the popular singer Gul Zaman.
In a statement, the Presidential Palace said the ministry had organized an art festival. At least 450 artistes, including singer Gul Zaman, were invited to the event.
The MoCI had suggested financial assistance for 50 artistes a call the president approved, the Palace said.
At least one person was killed and two others were wounded in a magnetic IED explosion in Kabul city on Thursday, local officials confirmed.
The spokesman of Kabul Police, Ferdaws Faramarz told Repoterly, “The incident took place at around 09:40am (local time) in Bagh-e Dawood area between PD5 and Baghman district after a magnetic mine placed on a Hilux vehicle was detonated.”
Farmarz further added that at least one civilian was killed and two others including a woman were wounded in the incident.
Second India-US ministerial dialogue has been held between India and the United States in Washington DC.
While briefing the media, India’s Union External Affairs Minister J Jaishankar said, “Our counter efforts were also discussed at today’s meeting and these have been boosted by growing consensus on the nature of terror threats in the region and the dangers of cross border terrorism.”
He further thanked US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo for US government support to the Chabahar project.
He said, “I am very grateful to Secretary Pompeo for reiterating the US government’s support to the Chabahar project which will immensely benefit Afghanistan.”
The United States Special Representative for Afghanistan Reconciliation, Zalmay Khalilzad has said that the Afghan peace process approached at an important stage.
“Wrapped up two days of consultations in Kabul. Productive trip,” Khalilzad said in a tweet.
He declared that he met with the US ambassador in Kabul, John Bass, Gen. Austin Scott Miller, commander of US and NATO Forces in Afghanistan, President Ashraf Ghani, Chief Executive Abdullah Abdullah, former president Hamid Karzai, women activists, and other political leaders and discussed efforts to achieve reduced violence and pave the way to intra-Afghan negotiations.
President Ghani’s office said in a statement that both Khalilzad and the president discussed the ceasefire and the Taliban’s “safe havens outside Afghanistan.”
Khalilzad also met Abdullah Abdullah and they talked about the reduction of violence and ceasefire to reach a long-term peace in the country, said a statement by Abdullah’s office.
Afghan Deputy Foreign Minister for Management and Resources, Naheed Esar has met with the Chinese Ambassador to Kabul Mr. Wang Yu, where they focused a range of issues of mutual interest and bilateral arrangements.
The two sides recalled the traditional ties between the two countries, commending the extensive bilateral cooperation, foreign ministry said in a statement.
Briefly recalling the Deputy Minister’s productive visit to Uzbekistan, both sides emphasized the importance of stronger regional cooperation.
Ambassador Yu, highlighting the geostrategic importance of Afghanistan stressed that the neighboring countries should deliver their contributions towards a peaceful and stable Afghanistan for a connected region.
Indian deputy national security advisor Rajinder Khanna has said that Iran-India joint venture investment in Chabahar Port will create an exceptional opportunity for economic development of Afghanistan.
Rajinder Khanna made the remarks in the second session of the Regional Security Dialogue slated for Wednesday.
Tehran Security Dialogue attended by top security officials of Iran, Russia, Uzbekistan, Tajikistan, Afghanistan, China and India is to discuss the issues of Afghanistan and all-out fight against different types of terrorism.
He said that the peace talks in Afghanistan should focus on national law of the country and other countries should only have a facilitating role for intra-Afghan peace talks under the auspices of the Afghan Government.
The United States House of Representatives voted along party lines to impeach President Donald Trump for obstruction of Congress and abuse of power.
Trump is only the third president in US history to be impeached by the full House. Wednesday’s votes set up a likely January trial in the Republican-controlled Senate.
“It is tragic that the president’s reckless actions make impeachment necessary,” US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said as she “solemnly and sadly” opened the House debate on impeachment.
“He gave us no choice,” Pelosi said.
“The president is an ongoing threat to our national security, and the integrity of our elections, the basis of our democracy.”
Trump, who has denied any wrongdoing, took the stage at a Michigan rally as the House began voting on impeachment.