22 January 2019

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Wednesday, July 18, 2012
BEIRUT: Syrian state television said Wednesday that a bombing in Damascus killed Defense Minister Daoud Rajha and his deputy, Asef Shawkat, who was the brother-in-law and close confidante of President Bashar al-Assad.
The deputy commander of the Free Syrian Army claimed responsibility for the attack, the latest and most dramatic sign of upheaval in more than 16 months of civil revolt.
“The Free Syrian Army carried out this attack in retaliation for the massacres committed by the regime and because of the international silence,” said the official, Col. Malik Kurdi. “We promised that we are going to hit the regime in its most sensitive axis. This was necessary for us.”
The explosion at the National Security building came during a meeting of cabinet ministers and top security officials and added to growing questions about the government’s ability to keep control of the capital, where fierce clashes between security forces and rebels have raged since Sunday.
Interior Minister Mohammad Ibrahim al-Shaar was seriously injured in the bombing but was in stable condition, Syrian news outlets reported. The death of Shawkat, who was married to Assad’s sister and for years was head of military intelligence, was considered an especially powerful blow to Assad’s tight inner circle.
“This cowardly act won’t affect us,” the defense ministry said in a statement that was read on state-controlled television. “If the people think they can force Syria in a certain direction by killing these people, they are delusional.”
On Tuesday, Syrian opposition groups said their fighters were converging on Damascus. Despite the overwhelming firepower of government troops, rebel forces appeared to hold their ground in several neighborhoods where the fighting was heaviest, according to members of the opposition.
The intense fighting in the capital marked the first time that many Damascus residents had seen overt signs of the bloody uprising against Assad that has left at least 14,000 Syrians dead.
 

Wednesday, July 18, 2012
Kabul (BNA) It is due to, Ghazni be announced as the capital of Islamic civilization by Islamic education, scientific and cultural organization in 2013.
Therefore in order to meet this commitment, a series of serious endeavors already under way and the relevant authorities have said, Ghazni would be ready to be the capital of Islamic civilization in 2013.
BNA analyst writes:
Afghanistan with rich and ancient culture and civilization, with special peculiarities, constitutes a part of this ancient and productive civilization. This special peculiarity of Ghazni city made the Islamic Educational, scientific and cultural organization to introduce Ghazni as the capital of Islamic civilization in 2013.
The people and the government of Afghanistan, welcome this great move by that organization, which certainly introduces Afghanistan as a country with old and ancient culture and civilization. In order to meet the objectives in that regard, the president of Islamic republic of Afghanistan assigned a commission consists of the representatives of ministries of information and culture, city development, local authorities of Ghazni and other relevant organs, with in a framework of an organized and coordinated program, prepare Ghazni to actually represent the capital of Islamic civilization in 2013.
In spite of some doubts, that Ghazni would not be ready to be the capital of Islamic civilization by 2013, the authorities of ministry of information and culture and local authorities of Ghazni say, clearly showed that the doubts are baseless, because effective works have been done in that regard and Ghazni will be ready to be the capital of Islamic civilization by that year. Among those patriotic endeavors, we can mention that recently, Mr. Nabi Farahi the acting minister of information and culture and Mr. Sayed Musadiq the deputy minister of information and culture inaugurated the repairmen and reconstruction works of 13 historical monuments in Ghazni. With completion of works on these 13 projects, totally, 32 historical sites and monuments In Ghazni would be ready for the visitors.
In addition of the above projects, the ministry of information and culture will rehabilitate the tombs of Sanai Ghaznavee, the great poet and scholar of Persian literature and Ab-Rehyan Alberowni famous astronomer of the country.
The authorities of ministry of information and culture assure what depend in Ghazni preparation for 2013,to them, will be completed until the beginning of next year. In the other end the local authorities of Ghazni Province have said that the works on building the Islamic cultural center which includes 70 projects are continuing.
Mr. Muhammad Musa Akbar Zada the Governor of Ghazni Province expressed hop the work on the majority of the projects are required by the capital of Islamic civilization  be completed and meet the objectives of Islamic, educational, scientific and cultural organization.
The above activities and strong commitments of the relevant authorities specially, the ministry of information and culture assure that Ghazni city would be ready to serve as the capital of Islamic civilization by 2013.
Granting this high title to Ghazni is a matter of pride for our people, because a part from ethnic, linguistic and geographical differences, all Afghans are the members of one family and live in the same house called Afghanistan.
So, they without any discrimination work for the progress and building there common house.
Therefore all Afghans consider their religious and patriotic duty together with relevant organs make their best in order, Ghazni be ready as the capital of Islamic Civilization to host the guest and visitors in 2013.         
 

Wednesday, July 18, 2012
Kabul (BNA) President Hamid Karzai met with the defense minister of France during which both sides discussed transition of security responsibility from the international forces to the Afghan lead, peace process and relations between the two nations.
The France Defense Minister thanked on behalf of France President over timely transition of security responsibility in Kapisa province and said that the process is moving in good manners.
The France Minister touched on the long-term strategic agreement between Afghanistan and France and said that the agreement has been referred to the France parliament for approval.
He called the agreement as important for France and stressed that his country within the framework of this treaty will continue its assistance and cooperation with Afghanistan in different spheres especially in training and strengthening of Afghan security forces.
President Karzai said at the meeting that he has assigned the ministers of defense and interior so that in coordination with the France forces implement the transition process in the Kapisa province.
President Karzai asked for cooperation of France in health spheres and thanked France for its financial commitments at the Tokyo Conference.
He stressed that in the Second Bonn, Chicago and Tokyo Conferences a firm foundation of relations and international assistance have been laid for the future of Afghanistan and the successful ending of the Tokyo Conference is to the benefit of Afghanistan.
 

Wednesday, 18 July 2012 09:28

Flood Killed Four Persons In Nangarhar

Wednesday, July 18, 2012
Nangarhar (BNA) Rain flood took the lives of four persons including a woman and a young girl in Nangarhar province.
The flood occurred in Acheen district and brought huge financial loses to the residents of the area last night.
Hajji Abdul Khaliq district governor of Acheen told BNA, in this flood hundreds jirbs of agricultural lands, gardens, power dams and water dams along with tens of cattle have been destroyed.
According to the governor, a number of residential houses have been partially damaged in this flood.
He added, soon essential aids will distribute to the flood affected people.
T. Rateb
 

Wednesday, July 18, 2012
Kabul (BNA) Great Britain has returned back 600 historical monuments of National Museum to Afghanistan recently which were looted during inner disputes and smuggled to Great Britain and confiscated at that country.
According to the ministry of information and culture the items were looted by plunderers and smuggled to Britain.
This valuable collection which includes 600 historical monuments have been delivered to Afghanistan recently and handed over to the relevant staff of the National Museum.
Also, in 2009, two thousands historical monuments which were smuggled to Great Britain and were confiscated there, had been returned back to Afghanistan.
 

Wednesday, July 18, 2012
Kabul (BNA) President Hamid Karzai met on Tuesday with Andrus Ansip, Estonian Prime Minister to discuss issues of mutual interest.
In a meeting held on Tuesday in the Presidential Palace, the two sides first expressed their pleasure over successful conclusion of the recent Tokyo Conference and discussed ways to enhance bilateral relations in various fields between the two countries.
Prime Minister Ansip then briefed the President on his trip to Afghanistan and the visit he had from Estonian troops stationed in Helmand province.
President Karzai assured the President that Estonia would remain committed to providing continued support to Afghanistan beyond 2014.
The President sought Prime Minister Asnip’s cooperation in providing educational opportunities for Afghan youth to pursue their higher education in Estonia.
 

Wednesday, 18 July 2012 08:49

Two NATO Soldiers Killed

Wednesday, July 18, 2012
Kabul (BNA) Two NATO soldiers were killed in two separate events in Afghanistan.
One of the soldiers killed in a mine explosion in the east of Afghanistan and the other one killed in attack of armed Taliban in the south of the country.
NATO in a press statement to BNA confirmed the dead of these soldiers but said nothing regarding the exact place of the events.
Meanwhile, another NATO soldier was killed in attack of armed Taliban in the south of Afghanistan and two more soldiers were injured due to crash of a military copter in the west of the country.
With death of these soldiers, the number of NATO casualties in 2012 reached to 310 soldiers while 596 NATO soldiers lost their lives last year in Afghanistan.
T. Rateb
 

Wednesday, July 18, 2012
Kabul (BNA) Chaired by first vice President, Marshal Mohammad Qasim Fahim and attended by some approved members of the cabinet, a number of rectors and teachers of the University of Afghanistan, the first session high council of higher education institutes was held here in Kabul yesterday.
Initially Prof. Dr. Obaidullah Obaid Minister of Higher education talked on the need for formation of the high council of higher education and necessary measures in this respect and introduced the members of the council.
Marshal Fahim chairman of the council called formation of this council as an important step and added that we can through establishment of the higher education councils achieve positive activities for the young youth of the country.
He added that with the passages of events and security problems heavy damages had been sustained by the higher education organizations and as a result the youth remained without attaining vocational education, while education in the present world determines all aspects of socio-economic development.
It is natural that the achievements, in the education spheres can be attained appropriate with the illiterates we cannot expects anything to do for the nation.
We had Universities in the past which trained qualified cadres but they had limited capacities. He added that from the Bonn conference to the rehabilitation of education organizations positive steps have been taken, in this direction and in addition to rehabilitation of the formers Universities many private Universities have emerged in the scene and they were registered.
This has been boosting era for education and we can call it an education revolution in the country. We are hopeful that much better opportunities are prepared for attraction of more youth to theses institution and as a result of sound competitions they cans raise their knowledge and ensure a better future for the society since education can prepare the ground for development.
The councils would share the collective thoughts of its members and they will be cooperative in implementing decisions as well.
Mohammad Usman Buburi deputy minister of higher education and secretary of the council presented a report on the seminar and earlier activities of the council.
The council adopted following.
1- The national independency of the University of Afghanistan was confirmed and it was decided that as commission with  the participation of representatives from the ministries of education, public health, finance justice, economy, led by the minister of higher education be established and refer the result of their activities in this respect.
2-  The issue for creation of six educational foundations in the provinces that their works has been completed should be referred to the administration affairs so that their budgetary issues be specified and referred to the council of Ministers for adoption.
3- The amount of salaries of the erectors of the Universities, facilities lectures and the regulations on scale of salary has been adopted and referred for further reviewing.
4- In relations to those lectures who are nominated for the educational scholarship and after return to the country have not completed their educations the higher education ministry was assigned to prepare a regulation in this respects.
 

Wednesday, 18 July 2012 06:31

Lower Orakzai Van Blast Toll Rises To 13

Wednesday, July 18, 2012
PESHAWAR: A bomb ripped through a vehicle in Pakistan's northwestern tribal belt on Wednesday, killing thirteen civilians including two children, officials said.
The bomb exploded in Sepoy village in Orakzai district, said senior administration official Zakir Hussain.
"It was remote-controlled bomb planted on the road. The bomb exploded near a pick-up van carrying passengers," Hussain told.
The blast killed seven people on the spot while six others succumbed to their injuries after reaching the hospital.
Two women, an 11-year-old boy and a three-year-old girl were among the victims while four others were wounded.
Most of the victims were the passengers of the unfortunate van who were shifted to Kohat Hospital where some are said to be in critical condition.
Intelligence officials confirmed the blast and the casualties.
The security forces and Aman Lashkar (peace militia) started search operation after the explosion during which exchange of fire was reported.
 

Wednesday, 18 July 2012 05:31

Obama Names New Afghan, Pakistan Envoys

Wednesday, July 18, 2012
WASHINGTON: President Barack Obama on Tuesday named veteran diplomats to be the US ambassadors to Afghanistan and Pakistan, tasking them with shaping highly sensitive relationships after US troops pull out.
Two month after the incumbents resigned, Obama named Richard Olson, a former ambassador to the United Arab Emirates, to serve in Pakistan and James Cunningham, the number two at the US embassy in Kabul, to be the ambassador.
The two men will need confirmation by the Senate. They would serve as the United States prepares to withdraw combat forces from Afghanistan in 2014, a transition that also profoundly impacts rocky relations with Pakistan.
“I am grateful that these talented and dedicated men and women have agreed to take on these important roles and devote their talents to serving the American people,” Obama said in a statement announcing several new postings.
“I look forward to working with them in the coming months and years,” said Obama, who is seeking a second four-year term in November 6 elections.
The outgoing US ambassador to Pakistan, Cameron Munter, resigned in May after a turbulent tenure in which US forces secretly killed Osama bin Laden near Pakistan’s main military academy, humiliating the powerful army.
Munter had been an advocate within the Obama administration for reconciliation with Pakistan. People close to him said he was frustrated that the CIA and Pentagon took the lead on Pakistan policy, with Munter’s job effectively to contain the fallout.
After a half-year standoff, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton earlier this month said sorry to Pakistan for the deaths of 24 troops in an air raid near the Afghanistan border, leading Islamabad to reopen key supply routes.
Just two weeks after Munter’s announcement, the US ambassador to Afghanistan, Ryan Crocker, also said he would leave his post early. The State Department said he decided to leave the stressful job for health reasons.
Olson, the nominee to be ambassador to Pakistan, is a 30-year veteran of the State Department who served as the envoy to the United Arab Emirates from 2008 to 2011.
Until last month, Olson served in the US embassy in Kabul as the coordinator for development and economic affairs, a key priority for Washington as the United States prepares to withdraw its forces.
Pakistan has repeatedly voiced fear that the United States will lose interest in the region with the end of the war, first launched after al Qaeda carried out the September 11, 2001 attacks on the United States.
US officials believe that Pakistan has maintained close ties with violent extremists in Afghanistan, most notably the Haqqani network, so as to preserve influence after the US withdrawal and balance arch-rival India.
The United States has insisted that it will maintain an interest in Afghanistan and earlier this month designated the war-torn country a major non-Nato ally, providing the framework for future cooperation.
Under an agreement signed by Obama and Afghan President Hamid Karzai, US troops will be able to stay in Afghanistan until at least 2024 to train Afghan troops and conduct operations against extremists.
Cunningham served as US ambassador to Israel before taking his post in Kabul. He has also served as consul general in Hong Kong and as deputy US representative at the United Nations.