21 November 2018

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Wednesday November 21, 2018

Kabul (BNA) The United States Special Representative for Afghanistan Reconciliation, Ambassador Zalmay Khalilzad, during his second tour of Kabul, briefed President Ghani and other Afghan officials on his recent efforts for peace in Kabul said in his Facebook page on Monday.
Meanwhile, Ambassador Khalilzad in his meeting with Afghan civil society and women’s rights activists, including acting minister of information and culture Ms. Hasina Safi, Sima Samar chairman of Afghanistan Independent Human Right Commission, members of the media, and other key governmental and non-governmental officials, hinted at women’s key role in the peace process, adding that all Afghans must have a say in creating a sustainable peace in Afghanistan. Ambassador Khalilzad said: “Peace is the yearning of all Afghans. The U.S. would like to help Afghans achieve this objective, which is a very worthy goal. Afghanistan has been at war for 40 years. The Afghan people deserves peace. We want to be a partner to the Afghans in achieving this goal.
 

Wednesday, 21 November 2018 05:54

President Ghani Meets EU Countries’ Ambassadors

Wednesday November 21, 2018

Kabul (BNA) President Mohammad Ashraf Ghani met with ambassadors and representatives of stakeholder nations and institutions at the Presidential Palace to discuss Afghanistan’s preparations for Geneva conference to be held in November 27-28. According to BNA report, the President thanked the ambassadors and representatives for their help in organizing the conference. He said that it gave Afghanistan and its partners an opportunity to lay out gains and achievements of the first half of transformation decade, and discuss challenges lying ahead. President Ghani reaffirmed that Afghanistan is in the process of transforming from a financially-dependent to an active partner nation.
 

Wednesday November 21, 2018

Kabul (BNA) The US House of Representatives delegation headed by James Binks has called on President Mohammad Ashraf Ghani and discussed various issues of mutual interest, BNA reported.
The impact of US strategy for Afghanistan and South Asia, Afghan-owned and led peace process, elections, reforms and regional connectivity projects had been discussed during the meeting. The US delegation renewed their support for Afghanistan in various fields and hailed the achievements of the government. During the meeting, the President lauded the US government and its people for continued assistance to Afghanistan.
 

Wednesday November 21, 2018

Kabul (BNA) President Mohammad Ashraf Ghani attended and spoke during a ceremony held at Salam Khana Palace to commemorate Prophet Mohammad (PBUH)’s birthday.
According to BNA report, after reciting some verses of holy Quran by Alhaj Qari Barakatullah Saleem, while congratulating Milad-un-Nabi to the Afghan nation and all Muslim people worldwide, the President said Prophet Mohammad (PBUH)’s prophetic mission took place while war, ignorance, discord and brutality had been reached their highest peak and the people’s lives had been destroying by wrongdoers. Allah the Almighty had sent his messenger in those dark nights of the history to illuminate love and mercy torches, the President further said. During those hard days, Prophet Mohammad (PBUH) had to take the sword and fight against invading forces, but we all know that war was not his final goal and he was not willing to continue enmity with anyone, President Ghani added. The President clarified that in our society, we need to continue Prophet Mohammad (PBUH)’s way of life more than before. He added we should bolster peace and brotherhood culture in our society. He stressed that this is our national, Islamic and human duty to pave the way for future generations’ life and that to be void of war and hate. At the end, the President said Ulama Councils’ heads would attend all administrative sessions being held in our provinces of the country, the preachers’ allowances would increase, hajis’ teachers would be chosen from among the masjids’ preachers and in cooperation with provincial administrations, computer classes would be held for preachers and religious scholars. During the ceremony, a number of preachers and religious scholars also spoke about Prophet Mohammad (PBUH)’s virtues and stressed on Muslim people’s unity.
 

Wednesday November 21, 2018

Kabul (BNA) Minister of Foreign Affairs H.E. Salahuddin Rabbani received in his office the Chief Operation Officer of the British Foreign and Commonwealth Office, Ambassador Peter Jones the other day.
Based on information of MoFA’s spokesman press office to BNA, Mr. Jones was accompanied by the current British Head of Mission to Kabul, Ambassador Nicholas Kay.
Foreign Minister Rabbani, welcoming Mr. Jones to Kabul, thanked the UK government for the assistance it has provided to Afghanistan over the past years.
Ambassador Jones assured the Afghan Foreign Minister of the UK’s commitment to the two countries’ bilateral ties.
The two sides discussed developments in the areas of mutual importance and some bilateral arrangements, including a contract to be finalized between the Afghan and British governments involving a plot of land in Kabul, where the latter will construct facilities for its mission.
 

Wednesday November 21, 2018

Kabul (BNA) UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres condemns the suicide bomb attack on a religious gathering in the Afghan capital of Kabul, his spokesman said in a statement on Wednesday.
"The deliberate targeting of civilians is a clear violation of international humanitarian law. Every effort should be made to bring perpetrators to justice. The Secretary-General extends his deepest sympathy and condolences to the families of the victims and the Government of Afghanistan. He wishes a speedy recovery to those injured," the statement read.
The UN Security Council slammed the attack as well.
"The members of the Security Council expressed their deepest sympathy and condolences to the families of the victims and to the Government of Afghanistan and they wished a speedy and full recovery to those who were injured. The members of the Security Council reaffirmed that terrorism in all its forms and manifestations constitutes one of the most serious threats to international peace and security," the council's press statement read.
The UN mission in Afghanistan said that it was "outraged" by the bombing of a gathering bearing special religious significance. UN human rights teams are currently engaged in investigation.
US Department of State spokesperson Heather Nauert said in a statement that the US is committed to peace in Afghanistan and also strongly condemns a suicide bomb attack.
"The United States strongly condemns the attack in Kabul today at a religious gathering," Nauert said on Tuesday. "The United States remains committed to peace and stability in Afghanistan, and stands by the people of Afghanistan who want peace and a future free from these horrific acts of violence."
Afghanistan has long been suffering from unstable political and humanitarian situation, which had worsened due to the activities of various terrorist groups such as the Daesh and Taliban. The Afghan National Defense and Security Forces are currently conducting joint offensive operations to combat terrorism across the country.
Sputniknews
 

Wednesday November 21, 2018
Kabul (BNA)
Excellencies,
Honorable delegates,
Ladies and gentlemen,
It is a great pleasure to address this thematic session Shaping the Future Through Gender Polices. I would like to extend my gratitude for the organizer of this meeting – the OECD and all our counterparts.
We are all aware of the conditions in most, of Afghanistan under the Taliban between 1995 and 2001. It was appalling for all our citizens, especially the women and girls of the country, who were deprived of all their basic rights to education, healthcare and employment. That is why going back to that era or those conditions is not an option.
The fall of the Taliban saw a return to normalcy, and by 2004 a new Constitution that adheres to religious and cultural values, formed the basis for a new Afghanistan where women regained their rightful place in society and all facets of life. Many improvements can be pointed out to over the past 17 years, partly due to the will of the Afghanistan people, as well as the commitment of the international community to help us rebuild after three decades of war. We have witnessed major improvements in all fields, mainly education, social and economic development, civil society, private sector growth, and in areas where the active participation of women has been visible and impactful.
It is the goal of Government to eliminate discrimination and violence against women, develop their human capital and promote their leadership in order to guarantee their full and equal participation in all aspects of life.
We believe that gender participation and contribution help lift families and communities out of poverty and contributes to higher GDP levels. This phenomenon is seen and felt globally, and in Afghanistan an unprecedented number of Afghan women are participating in the formal private sector economy as entrepreneurs, business owners and employees. Women are also playing a significant role in the Afghanistan SME sectors, such as agriculture, carpets, gems and handicrafts.
To further promote women’s involvement in business, the High Economic Council approved the proposal for the establishment of Afghanistan Women’s Chamber of Commerce and Industries. As a facilitator and supporter of this historic step toward women’s independence and economic empowerment, I believe this would play a significant role in removing the obstacles on the path of women in business and industry.
Along the the same lines, the mentioned Council has recently approved 15 to 25% of all industrial Parks to be allocated to businesses running by women and SMEs.
Ladies and gentleman,
Afghanistan continues to strive to engage women in all fields so they can realize their potential. The National Unity Government has paid special attention to their cause, not only to provide educational and capacity building opportunities but also to empower women and enable their advancement and empowerment.
Last month, 417 women ran as candidates in the elections for 25% of the seats in the Lower House of Parliament. At no time in our history have so many women – many of whom are under the age of 40 – have participated in the political life of the country. Today, a woman sits on the Supreme Court, a first again. And many more are ministers, ambassadors, governors, judges and high-level officials.
On the private sector side, we have more women entrepreneurs and investors than ever before. If we look at the history of Afghanistan, women contributed tremendously to the economic growth of the family and their communities as a whole. Sectors such as rugs and carpets, gems and handicraft have flourished mostly as a result of women skills and hard work. Nowadays, diversification has opened new avenues for the younger generation who are in newer sectors, including services, IT, construction, agri-business, healthcare and education.
Almost 900 small-to-medium size companies across the country today are owned and run by women. They have generated a significant number of job opportunities for both women and men. The impact of women’s economic empowerment is so significant that the Afghanistan government dedicated a part of the National Priority Program to women’s economic development.
Ladies and Gentlemen!
Challenges exist. Female entrepreneurs face barriers and hurdles in setting up and growing businesses in comparison to men in areas such as registering their businesses, paying taxes and accessing contracts. To seek solutions, we are committed to:
• Ensure interagency and inter-ministerial support and coordination of policies and programs. A perfect example is the Women Economic Empowerment Executive Committee which has been established last year and I am chairing it.
• Provide women business owners with access to information about laws, regulations, policies, licensing requirements, contracting procedures, customs regulations, standards and certifications.
• Prepare a policy and a strategy to address and remove government impediments, as well as market barriers such as access to finance.
• Training and skills development – in specific problem areas such as product design, marketing and sales, financial management and market access in both domestic and international markets.
Ladies and Gentleman!
We believe development of policies and better staff performance will help Afghanistan women entrepreneurs to participate in the transition of the Afghanistan economy.
I believe that the backbone of our economy is small and medium enterprises. These SMEs represent over 90% of the businesses in Afghanistan, yet their growth is constrained by lack of access to capital. The government intends to promote both domestic and foreign investment in our SME sector.
Although the role of women in SMEs is currently limited, it is increasing day by day. We believe that Women – owned and women – managed Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) are especially playing an important role in the economic development of a country and They are the locomotive that drives our national economy forward. Supporting and promoting these SMEs are in the center of our focus. We are utilizing scarce resources that exist within the government to promote women owned or/and managed businesses. The planned formation of a new directorate for women SME is an indication of our commitment to achieve this goal.
To promote women’s involvement in business, we have established the ‘Women in Business’ working group to support female entrepreneurs and women-owned businesses. At present there around 1000 women-owned or managed businesses registered in Afghanistan.
Ladies and Gentlemen,
The working-age population in Afghanistan is around 16 million people, half of whom are economically active. Typically we are talking about this half, but forget about the second half, a great majority of whom are women, who due to different reasons including insecurity, culture and religious beliefs, illiteracy and lack of skills, are restricted to their homes that make them impoverished, food insecure, and not allowing them to contribute to the economy. We, through our Ministry of Economy, are working on a study to find out how we can bring economic activities into their communities and houses. I strongly urge our partners including OECD to help us with this very important study to enable this large economically inactive labor force and their families to come out of poverty and food insecurity by making them productive, perhaps through famous home -based work concepts.
As part of my concluding remarks, I would like to thank the organizers and participants of this important session. We have achieved much but need to do more to realize our goals. Cooperation and coordination at the global, international, national and local levels will be crucial to shaping the future achieving our policy objectives.
Thank you.

Wednesday November 21, 2018

Kabul (BNA) More than 40 people were martyred in a suicide attack on a religious celebration in Kabul city late yesterday.
According to BNA report, a suicide bomber targeted a gathering of hundreds of Muslim religious scholars in the Kabul city  on Tuesday, martyring over 40 people.
According to reports, more than 60 people were wounded in the attack, which took place as Muslims around the world marked the birthday of the Prophet Mohammed.
The suicide bomber was able to sneak into a wedding hall in Kabul where hundreds of religious scholars and clerics had gathered to mark the occasion.
The victims of the attack unfortunately are all religious scholars who gathered to commemorate the birthday of Prophet Mohammed.
No individuals or groups has commented regarding the incident so far.
M.A.Ansari
 

Monday November 19, 2018

Ghazni City (BNA) At least 9 anti-government militias were killed following air attacks carried out by Coalition Forces in Ghazni province.
Col. Fazul Khuda Ibrahimkhail spokesman of 203 Tander army corps reported BNA, the air raids launched by Coalition Forces in relevant areas of Malistan and Qara Bagh districts of the province.
Six other terrorists were wounded and three vehicles belonged to the terrorists have been destroyed during the attacks, Ibrahimkhail added.
According to another report, two insurgents who riding motorcycle have been targeted and killed by Coalition Forces in Shamozay region, Zarmat district of Paktia province.
Meanwhile, five round of mines have been discovered and defused by Afghan National Army troops in different parts of Paktia, Khost and Ghazni provinces.
M.A.Ansari

Monday November 19, 2018

Kunduz City (BNA) A road named “Shahid General Abdul Raziq Achekzai Road” former police chief of Kandahar in Kunduz province.
According to BNA report, road of Shahrak Sardora-Airport of Kunduz named Shahid General Abdul Raziq by Abdul Jabar Naimi governor of Kunduz, head and members of provincial council and tribal elders of the province.
It is mentionable that, General Abdul Raziq former police chief and General Abdul Momin Ex chief NDS of Kandahar lost their lives following in attack carry out by bodyguard of Kandahar governor last month.
Meanwhile, Zalmi Wessa governor of Kandahar and U.S. General were wounded during the attack.
Taliban militants claimed responsibility of the attack.
M.A.Ansari
 

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