Newsfeed; Sunday, February 14 2021

Latest news and happenings of Afghanistan and region…

  • 14 Feb 2021 Share this post

    Taliban Stalled Intra-Afghan Talks, Says HCNR

    Following the stalemate in the peace talks, the High Council for National Reconciliation said that the Taliban group is waiting for the position of the US government to be clarified.

    Azizullah Din Muhammad, the deputy of HCNR said, “The Taliban want to know if the US government’s review of the implementation of the peace agreement with the group will change the US government’s decision.”

    Mr. Muhammad stated that the Taliban are waiting for the result of the US review over the Doha agreement.

    After the inauguration of new US President Joe Biden, his administration ordered a review of the agreement between the US and the Taliban.

    US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken has said he wants to know what is in the agreement, what commitments the Taliban have made and what responsibilities the United States has.

    Meanwhile, another member of the Afghan government’s negotiating team says that more than a month passed, but the Taliban delegation has not yet presented at the negotiating table.

    Rasool Talib, another member of the delegation, had previously accused the Taliban of not being interested in meaningful peace talks at all.

  • 14 Feb 2021 Share this post

    Two Security Forces Killed, One Civilian Wounded in Three Separate Incidents in Kabul

    At least two security forces were killed and one civilian was wounded in three separate incidents in Kabul province on Sunday, media outlets reported.

    Reports suggest that an officer of the Marshal Qasim Fahim Military University was killed by unidentified gunmen Band-e Gharqa area of Kabul.

    In the second incident, unknown armed men killed a brigade officer in Qarabagh district of Kabul.

    The third incident happened when armed robbers injured a civilian near Wazir Akbar Khan hill in PD10 of Kabul, took all of his money and escaped from the area.

  • 14 Feb 2021 Share this post

    AIHRC Calls for Immediate Restart of Intra-Afghan Talks

    Afghanistan Independent Human Rights Commission (AIHRC) has called on the Afghan government and the Taliban to resume peace talks as soon as possible.

    “The commission has republished its letter to the chairmen of the negotiating delegations, calling for their return to the negotiating table and continuing to reduce the unjustified costs of war,” AIHRC said.

    The rights body emphasized the need for an immediate ceasefire and a concerted and responsible effort to end the war.

    The second round of peace talks began in Qatar at least a month and a half ago; But since then, no formal meeting has been held between the two sides.

    During this time, the Taliban delegation has traveled to Iran, Russia and Turkmenistan.

    Members of the Afghan government’s negotiating team say the Taliban have been reluctant to hold a formal meeting for some time, and that the peace talks have been stalled.

  • 14 Feb 2021 Share this post

    People Will Not Allow Anyone to Enter Presidential Palace By Force: Mina Pal Tells Hekmatyar

    Reacting to recent the remarks by Hezb-e-Islami leader Gulbuddin Hekmatyar, the President’s deputy spokesman Dawakhan Minapal, said that only the defense and security forces had the right to use force.

    Minapal stated that no individual or group other than the defense and security forces had the right to use force.

    “The current system is based on the will of the nation,” he said. “It has national and international legitimacy. The people fully support their system. Because of the bitter experience of the past, the people have stood in support of this system and will not allow anyone to rule them by force and enter the Presidential Palace. The security and defense forces are the defenders of the republic.”

    Earlier, Hezb-e-Islami leader Gulbuddin Hekmatyar warned that if the Afghan government does not release his party’s prisoners, a large rally would be held to end President Ashraf Ghani’s governance.

    Speaking at a ceremony marking the 32nd anniversary of the withdrawal of Soviet troops from Afghanistan, Mr Hekmatyar said that more than 30,000 Hezb-e-Islami prisoners were being held in Afghanistan prisons and another 100 were arrested after an agreement was signed between his party and the government.

  • 14 Feb 2021 Share this post

    Ministry of Health Reports 22 New Cases of COVID-19

    The Ministry of Public Health (MoPH) on Sunday reported 22 new positive cases of coronavirus out of 1814 samples tested in the last 24 hours.

    The ministry reported three recoveries and no death cases from COVID-19 in the last 24 hours.

    The cumulative number of total cases is now 55,514 the number of total reported deaths is 2,427,645 and the total number of recoveries is 48,395.

    The new cases were reported in Kabul, Herat, Kandahar, Nangarhar, Takhar, Kunar, Faryab, and Panjshir provinces.

  • 14 Feb 2021 Share this post

    President Ghani: Withdrawal of Soviet Troops from Afghanistan Was ‘Irresponsible’

    Afghan President Ashraf Ghani says the withdrawal of Soviet troops from Afghanistan was “iresponsible” and that no measures were taken for the future of the country when they left.

    President Ghani in a video message on the occasion of the 30th anniversary of Soviet Red Army’s withdrawal from Afghanistan said, “The purpose of the jihad was to create a system after the withdrawal of Soviet troops to strengthen and protect national and military institutions. But because the Soviet troops’ withdrawal was not responsible and no measures were taken for the future of the country, Afghanistan went into a civil war. ”

    President stated that the Afghan people must learn from all these experiences which the main reason for defeating the Soviet Red Army was the national unity of the country’s forces and the Mojahedin.

    “Afghanistan now has the opportunity to end the war and achieve peace. May peace be maintained and further strengthened our military and civilian institutions,” Ghani said.

    “Even now, our strategy of unity and integrity will prove that Afghanistan will achive peace; a lasting peace in which the dignity of every Afghan lies,” Ghani added.

  • 14 Feb 2021 Share this post

    US Aims to Abandon Doha Peace Accord: Hekmatyar

    The leader of Hezb-e-Islami, Gulbuddin Hekmatyar says the recent remarks by the new US President Joe Biden about Afghanistan indicate that the United States intends to abandon the Doha agreement.

    Speaking today at the 30th anniversary of Soviet Withdrawal from Afghanistan, Hekmatyar said that abandoning the Doha Agreement had no rational, logical or moral justification.

    According to Hekmatyar, the Doha agreement is not a one-man deal with the Taliban, but a US-government deal with the group, and Joe Biden’s partisan and personal differences with former US President Donald Trump should not cause the White House to back down.

    He called the signing of the Doha Agreement between the United States and the Taliban a necessity for the United States and said that the country had no choice but to leave Afghanistan.

    Hekmatyar stressed that Joe Biden can not achieve anything by continuing the war in Afghanistan, nor by violating the Doha agreement.

    He believes Mr Biden cannot force the Taliban to “retreat” under pressure.

    Hekmatyar’s remarks come as the new US administration has recently announced that it will review the peace agreement between the US and Taliban signed in Doha.

    Gabdin Hekmatyar makes the remarks as the new US administration, led by Joe Biden, announces that it is reviewing the Doha Agreement.

  • 14 Feb 2021 Share this post

    Pakistan Customs Authorities Foiled Attempt to Smuggle Arms, Ammunitions to Afghanistan

    The Pakistani Customs authorities foiled an attempt to smuggle arms and ammunition to Afghanistan in guise of the exports consignments.

    According to Pakistani media reports, the Model Customs Collectorate (A&F), Peshawar at Customs Station, Torkham, foiled the attempt to smuggle arms and ammunition to Afghanistan in the exports consignment.

    A 22-wheeler trailer loaded with cement bags was scanned at Torkham. The scan report highlighted abnormal images. The exports consignment was then put to thorough examination, which led to the recovery of 120 pistols of assorted brands and 43,500 rounds.

    The driver of the vehicle has been arrested and further investigation is underway.

  • 14 Feb 2021 Share this post

    Afghanistan Is Likely to Face New Crisis: Nabil

    Rahmatullah Nabil, the former director of the country’s National Directorate of Security (NDS), says that these days both the Taliban and the Afghan government are igniting the flames of war and there is no sign of sincerity in the peace process.

    Nabil in a series of tweets has said that from the very beginning of the intra-Afghan talks, it was clear to the Afghan people that both sides were not honest in the peace talks.

    He said that despite the start of intra-Afghan peace talks, one side is still killing and the other side is counting the casualties of the war.

    According to former director of NDS, the main actors in this war of attrition are others, and in the meantime, only the poorest citizens of Afghanistan fall victim to this war.

    Nabil had previously said that the Taliban saw the peace talks as a tactic and was essentially seeking a monopoly of power over religion and the collapse of Afghan institutions.

    He stressed at the time that both of these goals were in the interests of Pakistan, not Afghanistan, so the Afghan government should be prepared for a Plan (B).

    The former intelligence chief warned that if all Afghans, including the Taliban and the government, do not wake up this time and work for the survival of Afghanistan, the fear of repeating the same scenario of the Soviet Union on a larger scale would not be far.

    Mr Nabil has said the United States will not allow the Islamic Emirate of Taliban to rule Afghanistan, but that Washington cannot guarantee the viability of the shaky republic system.

  • 14 Feb 2021 Share this post

    18 Taliban Militants Killed in Kabul: MoD

    The Ministry of Defense (MoD) says Afghan security forces with the support of air forces launched an operation in Dagari area of Surobi district of Kabul province yesterday.

    MoD in a statement said that at least 18 Taliban insurgents were killed and 6 more were wounded during the operation.

    The statement added that most parts of the district were cleared of insurgents in the operation.