Latest news and happenings of Afghanistan and region…
Fifteen Afghan youth have completed training of fixed wing aircraft operation in Czech Republic.
Afghan embassy in Prague, capital of Czech Republic, in a statement has said that Afghan Air Force took one step forward by receiving the newly graduated pilots.
The source said the pilots received graduation documents during a special ceremony in Pardubice city of Czech Republic today.
The ceremony was organized by Lom Praha Trade aircraft company, which provided the pilots with memorial badge and certificates.
Afghan commandos in cooperation with Resolute Support Forces have freed 62 members of defense and security forces from a Taliban jail in northwest Badghis province, local officials said on Wednesday.
The spokesman of Badghis governor, Najmuddin Borhani told Reporterly, “The commandos conducted the raid against the prison in Bokak area of Bala Murghab district.”
Borhani noted that those freed included 55 army soldiers, five commandos, two border police and one police.
He added that five Taliban militants were detained during the raid while several others were killed or wounded.
Afghan local officials say at least 25 Afghan security forces have been killed and wounded in Kunduz province.
A provincial member of Kunduz, Safiullah Amiri told Reportely, “The Taliban militants attacked the center of Dasht-e Archi district on Tuesday night.”
According to Amiri, at least 13 security forces were killed and 12 others were wounded in clashes with Taliban.
He noted that three security forces have gone missing and it is not clear whether they escaped to arrested by the Taliban group.
In the meantime, the Ministry of Defense (MoD) in a press release said that at least eight Taliban insurgents have been killed during operations in Dasht-e Archi district.
Pakistan closed the Torkham border on Wednesday morning, Afghan officials cofirmed.
Nangarhar governor’s spokesman Attaullah Khogyani confirmed that Pakistan has closed the Torkham crossing (which connects Pakistan & Afghanistan in the east) due to some security reasons on Wednesday morning.
“Talks with Pakistan about reopening the crossing are ongoing”, Khogyani said.
However, some security sources underline that the clash between the Afghan frontier forces and the Pakistani militia is the cause of the shutdown.
Torkham is an important border for Afghanistan business transits that come through Karachi port.
Hundreds of protesters have gathered in Pakistani and Afghan cities and towns to voice anger over the detention of an ethnic Pashtun rights activist in Pakistan.
Manzoor Pashteen, the leader of a civic rights group that has criticized the Pakistani military’s operations in the northwestern tribal regions, was detained in the city of Peshawar, and a court rejected his bail application on January 28.
The leader of the Pashtun Protection Movement (PTM) is accused of sedition, hate speech, incitement against the state, and criminal conspiracy.
Protesters rallied in Islamabad, Karachi, and in northwestern Pakistan to call for Pashteen’s release.
Pashteen’s detention also sparked protests outside the Pakistani Embassy in Kabul, as well as in seven provinces in eastern and southeastern Afghanistan: Nangarhar, Kunar, Logar, Bamyan, Khost, Uruzgan, and Kandahar.
Iranian state TV cited a report by the Associated Press (AP) claiming that 100 bodies were found at the site of a US military plane crash in Afghanistan, but the news agency says this report doesn’t exist.
The Islamic Republic of Iran News Network (IRINN), which is part of the state-run Islamic Republic of Iran Broadcasting, reported Tuesday, according to BBC Monitoring: “US authorities have not yet released official casualty figures but the Associated Press, quoting local officials in Ghazni Province in Afghanistan, has announced that nearly 100 corpses have been found at the crash site.”
The AP has published reports on the disaster, but none of them have contained the 100-bodies figure. The news agency also told BBC Monitoring that it did not report this, the monitoring site tweeted Tuesday.
Iran’s rolling news channel said: "US authorities have not yet released official casualty figures but the Associated Press, quoting local officials in Ghazni Province in Afghanistan, has announced that nearly 100 corpses have been found at the crash site." pic.twitter.com/WRwq3i2j1w
— BBC Monitoring (@BBCMonitoring) January 28, 2020
US officials on Tuesday recovered the remains and are confirming the identities of people involved in the crash, Reuters reported. The officials did not give a number.
The plane, a US Air Force Bombardier E-11A, is widely believed to have been carrying no more than six people at the time of the crash. New York Times correspondent Mujib Mashal said on Tuesday that the most widely-cited figure is two.
Iran’s state-run Channel One network also peddled a theory that a senior CIA official named Michael D’Andrea had been on the plane.
A high-level conference took place at the Federal Foreign Office in Berlin on 28 January 2020 with the aim of strengthening cooperation in the region as well as the exchange between policy-makers, academia and civil society.
A joint declaration on cooperation in the field of climate and security has been signed between the central Asian countries, Afghanistan and Germany.
In addition to German Foreign Minister Maas, who is hosting the event, colleagues from Afghanistan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Turkmenistan, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan took part part in the conference.
This includes the spheres of water and glacier protection in particular, energy, biodiversity, land management and agriculture and is to be implemented at national and regional level.
The aim of the Green Central Asia initiative is to create better access to information and promote academic cooperation in the Central Asian states and Afghanistan during the next four years.
The concrete implementation of the declaration is to be underpinned by a high-level political dialogue format.
The bodies of two American Air Force members have been recovered from a plane which crashed in Afghanistan.
US military command in Kabul said they also retrieved what they believe is the plane’s flight data recorder.
The service members were the only two aboard the Air Force E-11A electronic surveillance aircraft when it went down on Monday in Ghazni province.
Their identities have not been publicly announced, pending notification of their relatives.
A statement said the cause of the crash is under investigation, but there are no indications that it was downed by enemy fire.
Monday’s plane crash is not expected to derail US-Taliban peace talks if the crash investigation determines, as expected, that it was not the result of hostile action.
The crash site is about six miles from a US military base.
In its statement on Tuesday, the US military command in Kabul thanked local Afghans for treating the remains with respect.
It said that after removing the remains, US forces destroyed the remnants of the E-11A aircraft.