Latest news and happenings of Afghanistan and region…
A blast had been reported to have taken place in PD1 of Lashkargah city in Helmand when a magnetic improvised explosive device attached to a civilian vehicle detonated in the area.
Pajhwok News has reported that 2 policemen and 4 civilians have been wounded due to the blast so far.
Afghan National Directorate of Security (NDS) has announced that 86 IS-K fighters and Taliban were killed and 115 were captured in a number of provinces on election day.
The operations were carried out in the provinces of Kabul, Kandahar, Nangarhar, Paktia, Paktika and Helmand for security of voters.
The National Directorate of Security also added that on election day, Kabul also discovered and defused 2,440 kilograms of explosives with 4 mines.
Also from Paktia province, a suicide attacker called Rashid, had been detained.
Ghazni local officials say that a delegation from Kabul has come to Ghazni to negotiate with the public about how the elections should be held, but so far no results have been reached.
However, Ghazni governor spokesman, Arif Noori told Reporterly that two proposals were submitted to the delegation by Ghazni residents, “one of the proposals emphasized that Ghazni seats should be decided based on the statistics of the ethnic groups’ population in the province, but another proposal was that the Ghazni elections should be held as a single electoral zone along the same lines with other provinces”, Noori added.
According to Mr. Noori, the meetings of this delegation are continuing today.
Ghazni Governor’s spokesman also said that the governor will return to Kabul after the delegation reaches an agreement with the Ghazni people and will discuss the decision with the Independent Election Commission and government representatives.
The current delegation was formed for Ghazni after the president called on the second vice president, first deputy chief executive and the head of IDLG to find a solution to the Ghazni electoral deadlock.
The elections in Ghazni were challenging and were not held due to ethnic issues on how to hold elections.
In a press conference on Tuesday, the spokesperson of IECC, Ali Reza Rouhani has stated a number of things regarding what votes will be counted as valid.
Firstly, those votes of the ballot boxes which are based on biometric identification and the voter lists are to be considered valid.
Secondly, votes of those polling stations where polls were conducted with biometric devices but without voter lists are also deemed to be valid, if and only if they match the main list.
Moreover, Mr Rouhani added that those votes will be counted as valid which were cast in polling stations with only the voter lists, but provided that these are approved by the observers.
Furthermore, the spokesperson said that provincial offices of IEC need to cooperate with the electoral observers and monitors within the law.
This comes after a lot of confusion was prevailing after elections as to what votes will be counted as valid since there were missing biometric devices, of voter lists in many polling stations.
In a press conference on Tuesday, Ali Reza Rohani the spokesperson for IECC clarified that if election employees and staff, and candidates were found to have violated any electoral laws, they shall be prosecuted.
Even the IEC spokesperson Sayed Hafizullah Hashemi corroborated by saying this prosecution of those who violated laws is to be done so that the public’s trust in electoral process deepens and remains intact.
The IECC and IEC have both made a decision on Tuesday to count the ballot papers that lack a biometric barcode as valid votes if, and only if the voter lists are approved by the observers. Earlier the IECC had announced that votes without biometric barcode will be declared invalid, soon after the parliamentary elections got over.
This agreement comes after IEC’s decision earlier today, to count votes that have been cast without voter details getting registered in biometric devices.
The Independent Election Commission on Tuesday in a press conference announced that they will be announcing the timetable for presidential elections by the end of the week or by beginning of next week.
The presidential elections are expected to take place in April of 2019 and it is being anticipated that the timetable be out soon for the same.
Local officials have reported the killing of a prominent Al-Qaeda commander in Ghazni province.
Ghazni governor’s spokesman, Arif Noori, said that last night Afghan forces, along with coalition forces, killed a senior al-Qaeda commander in a special operation in Waghaz district.
In the course of the operation, which targeted the insurgents, 17 people were killed, including four Pakistani terrorists, out of which two of them, Asho Mohammad and Kamal Farooq, were Taliban leaders, according to Noori.
Kamal Farooq was one of the prominent al-Qaeda commanders operating under the Taliban group in the province, he added.
According to the Afghan Ministry of Public Health, 50% of girls in the country do not have adequate information about their menstruation.
Ministry of Public Health minister, Firozuddin Firuz, said on Tuesday in an awareness program that 30% of girls are not attending school at the time of menstruation. Also, 12% do not have access to sanitations such as pads, clean water, soap as well as place for applying this sanitary measures during menstruation. Worse, 7% of girls also do not bathe in Afghanistan during menstruation.
This has led many girls in Afghanistan to be left out of many day-to-day and social activities during the menstrual period.
The Minister of Public Health has emphasized the availability of several volumes to inform young girls, and also enforced the distribution of iron supplements in schools to prevent iron deficiency.
It has been reported time and again that women in South Asian countries are most prone to anaemia which happens due to iron deficiency and is indirectly related to a lack of proper knowledge about the female menstruation.
During the operations of ANDSF in Herat, a prominent Taliban leader was wounded. As per the Ministry of Interior statement, the Afghan Police Special Forces conducted operations in Herat’s Pashtun Zarghon district on Monday because of which Taliban’s shadow district governor, Mullah Nabi was severely wounded.
As per the statement, 4 other militants and 2 guards of Mullah Nabi were also wounded.
The Ministry of Defense has reported that a total of 56 insurgents have been killed or wounded by the Afghan security forces operations across 6 provinces.
In Ghazni, 29 insurgents were killed while 3 were wounded by the ANA airstrikes and some ammunitions were also destroyed in Qarabagh and Malistan districts.
7 ISIS insurgents were killed and 2 others were arrested along with 2 hideouts being destroyed by ANA airstrikes and clearing operations in Deh Bala district of Nangarhar.
Furthermore, the ANA airstrikes in Uruzgan killed 5 insurgents and wounded 3 and even destroyed 4 hideouts.
Moreover, 3 Haqqani network terrorists were killed and 2 of their explosives laden vehicles were destroyed by the airstrikes in the Omna district of Paktika.
Additionally, 3 insurgents were killed and one was wounded by ANA response attacks in Naw Bahar district of Zabul Province.
Finally, 2 insurgents were killed and 1 vehicle of theirs was destroyed by airstrikes in Mohammad Agha district of Logar Province.
In his visit to Dubai for attending the ITU Plenipotentiary Conference of 2018, Dr Abdullah met with the Secretary-General of ITU, Houlin Zhao.
As per CEO Abdullah’s statement, they discussed about investment opportunities in Afghanistan in the field of Information Communication Technology as well as Information Technology. He also encouraged members to invest in Afghanistan.
In Germany, prosecutors say they have charged a 26-year-old former officer of the Afghanistan military with war crimes on allegations that he facilitated the abuse of prisoners in his care.
As per the Associated Press’s report, “The federal prosecutor’s office said on Monday that Ahmad Zaheer D, is accused of presiding over the interrogation of three prisoners in Afghanistan.
The suspect allegedly to pulled one of the prisoners by the hair and assaulted him. Another soldier is alleged to have hit a prisoner with a plastic pipe and to have knocked another to the floor and beaten him.”
The former military personnel Afghan suspect was arrested October 25 in Munich. Further details weren’t immediately available.
According to the statement and estimates of the Afghan Ministry of Agriculture, the province of Kandahar has produced an impressive 150 tons of pomegranate fruit this year.
This will bode well for the fruit export Afghanistan is known for and consequently improve the trade figured for the country.
The Independent Election Commission on Tuesday announced that as opposed to its earlier decision which stated that votes that were cast without voter details being entered into biometric devices will not be counted, the commission has now announced that these votes will indeed be included and counted.
This decision comes after it was pointed out that there were many polling centres where there were technical glitches in biometric devices faced by the staff and voters on polling day, which not only caused delay but also rendered some people to not be able to register their details in the device.