Newsfeed; Saturday, December 28 2019

Latest news and happenings of Afghanistan and region…

  • 28 Dec 2019 Share this post

    AIHRC Calls on IECC to Address Electoral Complaints Transparently

    Afghanistan Independent Human Rights Commission (AIHRC) has called on the Independent Electoral Complaints Commission (IECC) to address the complaints transparently and on time.

    AIHRC in a tweet urged IECC to address the complaints in a timely manner and in a fair and transparent manner.

    The commission said despite the insecurity and difficulties, the Afghan people have asserted their national responsibility, using their rights to participate in elections, took steps to uphold and promote the democratic values.

    AIHRC also praised Afghan people’s turnout in the Presidential election on 28th September.

  • 28 Dec 2019 Share this post

    Taliban Backs A Weeklong Ceasefire in Afghanistan: Reports

    The Taliban’s leadership has agreed to a weeklong ceasefire in Afghanistan, the Wall Street Journal reported on Saturday.

    The agreement came during the council’s meeting on Wednesday in the Pakistani city of Quetta, where it is based; WSJ reported citing an identified person which it said was briefed by a senior Taliban official who was present at the gathering.

    The Taliban’s supremer leader, Hibatullah Akunndzada, attended the meeting and approved the ceasefire, the report said.

    US negotiators renewed talks with the Taliban earlier this month. Those talks had been halted by President Donald Trump in September, who cited a deadly attack in Kabul in announcing the decision.

  • 28 Dec 2019 Share this post

    Taliban Kill 10 Afghan Soldiers in Attack on Base in Helmand

    Ten Afghan soldiers were killed in a Taliban attack on a military base in the southern province of Helmand on Saturday, officials said.

    The Taliban dug a tunnel into the base in volatile Sangin district and then blew it up before their fighters could attack the compound, Nawab Zadran a spokesman for 215 Maiwand Army Corps said.

    “There were 18 soldiers in the base at the time of the attack providing security for the people of Sangin. Four soldiers were wounded and four repelled the Taliban attack bravely,” he said.

    Provincial spokesman Omar Zawak confirmed the attack and said the soldiers were killed by the powerful blast inside the base.

    Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid in a statement sent to media claimed responsibility for the attack.

  • 28 Dec 2019 Share this post

    US Sen. Gillibrand Wants Senate Probe of Military’s Afghanistan War Spin

    New York Senator Kirsten Gillibrand says the US Senate should hold hearings to investigate how the war in Afghanistan has been conducted.

    The Washington Post published government documents over the last month showing that civilian and military leaders overstated successes in that war while downplaying systemic failures.

    Military leaders also concealed a growing conviction that the war might be unwinnable. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand says she’s seen the spin and misleading testimony first-hand.

    “I’ve been serving on the Armed Services Committee for ten years, so I’ve sat in these hearings,” Gillibrand told NCPR. “So I’ve sat in these hearings and I know exactly this glass half-full approach we’ve been given.”

    The 10th Mountain Division, stationed at Fort Drum in Watertown, has played a leading role in the Afghanistan War as have National Guard and Reserve soldiers from across the North Country.

    In an interview this month with NCPR, Gillibrand said the failure by White House officials and military leaders to tell Congress the truth about the war kept lawmakers from doing their jobs.

    “When these commanders come to Capitol Hill and testify how it’s going, Afghanistan or any other mission, they’re not being frank, they’re not being direct and they’re not being clear,” she said.

    “I think that approach has really misled Congress to keep spending billions and billions of dollars putting our men and women’s lives on the line for missions that perhaps aren’t working, for strategies that are ineffective. I think the men and women who serve our nation deserve much better. I think the Senate should do an investigation and find out how we got in this mess. I think having hearings in the Senate Armed Services committee is the first step.”

  • 28 Dec 2019 Share this post

    Republic of Korea Contributes $1mn To Improve Food Security Through Soy Production in Afghanistan

    The World Food Program (WFP) has welcomed a $1 million (₩1.18 billion; AFN78.2 million) contribution from the Republic of Korea to go towards improving household food security and nutrition through strengthening soya production in Afghanistan.

    As per Wasdam report, some 2,400 smallholder family farmers – 800 of which are female-headed – in Balkh, Herat, Jawzjan, Kapisa, Kunduz, Nangarhar, Parwan and Takhar provinces will receive improved fertilized soy seeds, training, agriculture equipment and other support to increase their soy bean productivity.

    “Agricultural and rural development enabled Korea to overcome extreme poverty and achieve economic development after the Korean War in the 1950s. Indeed, food security is the foundation for the development of any society. The soya program is designed to tackle food insecurity and malnutrition while promoting soya processed food, such as soya milk, soya naan and soya korma, and I hope Korea’s contribution to the soya program will lead to establishing self-sustainable soybean industry in Afghanistan,” said Zha Hyoung Rhee, Ambassador of the Republic of Korea to Afghanistan.

    WFP and partners will also work with soy seed producers, soya production companies and bakeries to link the smallholder family farmers’ soya products to the markets and to promote consumption in the country.

  • 28 Dec 2019 Share this post

    6 Afghan Security Forces Released From Taliban’s Prison in Ghazni

    The Ministry of Defense (MoD) has confirmed that at least 6 security forces have been released from a Taliban’s prison in Ghazni province.

    MoD in a press release on Saturday said that the Afghan Commando forces launched an operation on Friday night to break a Taliban’s prison in Qara Bagh district of Ghazni.

    The press release added that the released security forces include four army soldiers, two Police and two members of the uprising forces.

  • 28 Dec 2019 Share this post

    Two Killed, Wounded in Helmand Explosion

    Afghan security officials say at least one individual was killed and another one wounded in a magnetic bomb explosion in Helmand province on Friday night.

    The spokesman of the Ministry of Interior (MoI) Nasrat Rahimi said that the Taliban attached a magnetic IED to a civilian’s vehicle which went off at around 18:30pm (local time) in Solh peace circle area of Lashkargah city of Helmand.

    The Taliban group has not commented regarding the incident so far.

  • 28 Dec 2019 Share this post

    US Soldier Killed in Afghanistan Was Clearing Taliban Weapons Cache: US Military

    A U.S. Special Forces soldier who died in Afghanistan on Monday was seizing a Taliban weapons cache when he was killed, the U.S. military has said.

    Sgt. 1st Class Michael Goble was with his unit when its members discovered an undisclosed amount of Taliban weapons in Kunduz province, said Eric Pahon, a spokesman for the U.S. forces in Afghanistan.

    Pahon said Goble and others were clearing out the cache when an explosion happened.

    Pahon said the Taliban wrongly claimed that the service members were in a convoy and targeted by a roadside bomb during a raid.

    Goble, 33, of Washington Township in Bergen County, New Jersey, was killed Monday and an Afghan service member was wounded. Goble served with the 1st Battalion, 7th Special Forces Group.

    Details about what type of weapon or ammunition exploded are still under investigation.

  • 28 Dec 2019 Share this post

    Afghanistan Reopens Consulate in Peshawar after Three Months

    Afghanistan has reopened its consulate in Peshawar after nearly three months as an Afghan delegation wrapped up talks in Pakistan to settle dispute over the ownership of a marketplace in Peshawar.

    The consulate was closed in early October after the Afghan embassy in Islamabad said police in Peshawar removed the Afghan national flag from a market, which Afghanistan says is its property.

    First Secretary at the Afghan Consulate in Peshawar Faridoon Haiderkhel said the consulate has resumed visa operations from Friday.

    Haiderkhel wrote on his Facebook page that the people in Peshawar can now approach the diplomatic mission for visas.

    The controversy started after the Supreme Court of Pakistan ruled that a Pakistani citizen, Shaukat Kashmiri, is the owner of the Afghan Market, instructing the authorities to vacate the building and hand it over to Kashmiri.

  • 28 Dec 2019 Share this post

    Japanese Doctor Nakamura Receives Order of Rising Sun for Service in Afghanistan

    The Japanese Doctor Tetsu Nakamura, who was killed in Afghanistan earlier this month, was posthumously awarded on Friday a decoration for his contribution to the development of the central Asian country.

    Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe delivered the Order of the Rising Sun, Gold Rays with Rosette, and a letter of appreciation to Nakamura’s widow, Naoko, during a ceremony at his office in Tokyo.

    “You deepened the friendly relationship between Japan and Afghanistan and made remarkable contributions to expanding humanitarian assistance and international cooperation,” Abe said in the letter.

    The 73-year-old doctor and five Afghans were killed as armed men attacked their vehicle in Jalalabad in the eastern province of Nangarhar on Dec. 4. He was head of the Peshawar-kai aid group based in Fukuoka.