Latest news and happenings of Afghanistan and region…
The Ministry of Public Health (MoPH) says at least 33 new cases of the coronavirus were registered in the province’s laboratory during the past 24 hours.
The spokesman of MoPH, Wahidullah Mayar said the new cases include 22 cases in Kandahar, two in Zabul, 4 in Helmand and five in Nimroz.
Earlier on Wednesday morning, Mayar noted that 66 new cases were reported in Kabul, Herat, Ghazni, Nangarhar, Kapisa, Bamiyan, Laghman and Farah.
This comes as the total number of confirmed cases of coronavirus in the country reaches 1176.
As many as 492 stranded Pakistanis including 92 women returned from Afghanistan via the Torkham border.
Officials said another 111 children, not registered with them as stranded persons, but were travelling with their parents, mostly mothers, were also allowed to enter Pakistan.
Shamsul Islam, the focal person for returning Pakistanis, told Dawn that among the 492 registered persons, 470 were sent to the quarantine centres in Landi Kotal, 22 to Shah Kas centre in Jamrud and one person with some visible symptoms of coronavirus was admitted to the isolation ward of the district headquarter hospital in Landi Kotal.
He said so far 1,205 registered persons stranded in Afghanistan after the closure of the borders on March 16 had returned to Pakistan via the Torkham border.
The Ministry of Public Health (MoPH) says 51 new cases of the coronavirus were registered in the country during the past 24 hours.
The spokesman of MoPH, Wahidullah Mayar said that the new cases include 28 in Kabul, 3 in Herat, two in Ghazni, 4 in Kapisa, six in Nangarhar, 3 in Kunar, and one in each provinces of Parwan, Bamyan, Laghman, Paktia and Farah.
According to Mayar, 7 patients in Kabul, five patients in Herat, one in Badakhshan, one in Kapisa and two in Farah have been recovered.
He added that two patients in Kabul and two others in Nangarhar province have died of the coronavirus during the last 24 hours which the death toll in the country reaches 40.
This comes as the total number of confirmed cases of coronavirus in the country reaches 1143.
Officials at the Public Health department in Herat province say at least three new cases of the coronavirus were registered in the province.
The spokesman of Herat Public Health Department, Muhammad Rafiq Sherzai said around 40 suspected cases of the coronavirus were tested during the past 24 hours which three of them confirmed positive.
Sherzai noted that the new cases include two men and one woman which the total number of cases reaches 337 in the province.
Afghan local officials have confirmed that at least 10 new cases of the coronavirus have been registered in the laboratory of the Nangarhar province.
The spokesman of Nangarhar governor, Ataullah Khogyani said the ten new cases include six cases in Nangarhar, three cases in Kunar and one in Laghman province.
According to Khogyani, two patients infected with the coronavirus were died of the virus in Nangarhar which the death toll reaches 5 in the province.
This comes as the total number of confirmed cases of coronavirus in the country reaches 1102.
Pakistan has allowed import of bulk shipments of food items through Gwadar port for transit to Afghanistan to help Kabul maintain food supply while coping with the fallout of the Covid-19 outbreak, a Pakistani official said.
Since the outbreak of the coronavirus, subsequent lockdown and closure of the western border of Pakistan, more than 10,000 Afghan transit trade containers have been either stranded at Karachi ports, en-route to the border stations, or awaiting clearance at the border stations of Chaman and Torkham.
Under special permission, the government has resumed handling of Afghan cargo at Gwadar port under the Afghanistan-Pakistan Transit Trade Agreement-2010 which will help in early clearance and quicker transportation of sugar, wheat, and fertiliser to Afghanistan.
Unlike containers, these cargoes will be transported in sealed trucks to Afghanistan. Moreover, the cargoes coming from the Middle East will have a shorter distance to the Gwadar port.
The Indian Army is readying separate teams to be deployed in Sri Lanka and Afghanistan to help those countries boost capabilities to deal with rising cases of coronavirus, official sources said.
A 14-member Indian Army team was sent to Maldives last month to help the island nation set up coronavirus testing laboratories and train local medical professionals to fight the pandemic.
Earlier this month, India dispatched a 15-member team of Army to Kuwait as part of bilateral cooperation between the two countries.
The sources said the teams for Afghanistan are being readied as part of India’s policy of extending helping hand to all friendly countries in the region to fight the pandemic.
India has also been playing a key role in pushing for a common framework in fighting the pandemic in the SAARC region.