15 December 2019

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Saturday December 7, 2019
Kabul (BNA) Afghanistan will need continued financial support from the international community following a potential political settlement, a new World Bank report says.
The World Bank concludes that Afghanistan will require $6 billion to $8 billion a year in international grants between 2020 and 2024 to fund basic services, support faster economic growth, and consolidate and sustain any potential reduction in violence following a political settlement with the Taliban.
“An improving security situation, political stability, and freedom of movement can help increase private sector investment and job creation. But the gap between revenue and public expenditure remains large, and certain expenditure needs may increase following a political settlement,” said Henry Kerali, World Bank Country Director for Afghanistan.
“While a gradual decline in grant support can and should occur, it needs to be carefully calibrated to economic realities, to avoid deterioration in services and development outcomes. Such a deterioration may, itself, imperil prospects for sustainable peace”, he added.
According to the World Bank, however, Afghanistan has achieved remarkable progress in increasing revenues over recent years, the gap between revenues and expenditures remains wide.
This comes as Afghanistan continues to rely on grants to finance 75 percent of its total public expenditures. Total revenues currently amount to around $2.5 billion per year, while expenditures reach around $11 billion per year, according to World Bank.
The report also finds that expectations of a major aid-driven economic dividend following any political settlement are unlikely to be realized. Grant inflows are likely to remain limited under any scenario, relative to the extent of grant support already being provided. The most critical gains for Afghans following any political settlement would rather come from increased private sector investment, job creation, and access to services.

Saturday December 7, 2019
Kabul (BNA) Several terrorist hideouts belonged to Taliban group have been targeted by in Afghan air forces in southern Urozgan province the night before last.
The hideouts located in various parts of Tarinkot city the provincial capital of Urozgan province.
Top commander of Afghan national army in the south of the country told BNA correspondent, seven armed oppositions were killed, three more were wounded and three terrorist hideouts along with all military equipment have been demolished during the air raids.
According to another report, Afghan national police personnel by discovering and defusing 9 round of different type of mines succeeded to prevent several bloodiest incidents in crowded areas of Urozgan province.

Saturday, 07 December 2019 07:02

NSA Moheb Chairs Security Meeting

Saturday, December 7, 2019
Kabul (BNA) National Security Advisor Dr. Hamdullah Moheb in a meeting with the security authorities assessed an overall security situation, praising the recent few days’ improvement in security and defense situation in the country, said a statement from his office the other day.
He said the national forces should be used in the strengthening of order and security for the people and the government facilities should be used legally, said the statement. The issue of the government special development and security plans was spoken at the meeting, with the national security advisor urging for immediate implementation of the plans in the remote insecure districts of the country, according to the statement. Dr. Moheb also asked the related organs for tightening security judges and attorneys, said the source.

Saturday, December 7, 2019

Kabul (BNA) President of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan, Mohammad Ashraf Ghani in a meeting with the officials of the National Environment Protection Agency instructed for drawing up what he said an effective plan to prevent air pollution, a statement from the Presidential Office said Friday.
During the meeting held at the Presidential Palace on Thursday, the president issued the order to the EPA to install continuous air pollution measuring and monitoring facilities in Kabul soon, the statement added. According to the statement, the president asked the related authorities to meet every second day to evolve a strategy for curbing air pollution, the statement added. Senior EPA official, Eng. Ezzatullah Siddiqi, presented a report on implementation of plans for controlling pollution and offered a number of rec- commendations for curbing the air pollution, including two holidays in the winter and a check on the entry of heavy vehicles into the capital. He also called for raising public awareness on the issue, the use of masks, stabilization of liquefied gas prices to dis- courage the use of coal and plantation of saplings. Amarullah Saleh the deputy to the State-Building Team also spoke about the issue, listing the burning of old tires and raw coal as main causes of environmental pollution, according to the statement. President Ghani asked the NEPA to share its plan for the purchase of pollution gauging equipment with the Ministry of Finance. The agency was also asked to present its recommendations for the five most polluted cities at the next meeting. The President ordered the agency personnel to meet owners of brick-kilns as a major pollutant and submit comprehensive recommendations for dealing with the challenge in the next 10 days. He also asked the resident of five more polluted cities for sharing their proposals on the use of solar energy and minimizing reliance on burning coal. The statement went on as saying, the president stressed concrete pollution curbing measures must yield effective results over the next three months.

Saturday, December 07, 2019
Kabul (BNA) President Mohammad Ashraf Ghani in a meeting with members of election team of second vice president stressed on rule of law. In a ceremony held on this occasion at Salam Khana of Presidential Palace and attended by second vice president and a number of elders, President Ghani in his speech said: “Our common connectivity is the citizen connectivity and the presidential office was in the service of all and for respecting the nation and each citizen of Afghanistan”. “We have all a clear con- senses that we do not let repetition of the past as we think of future. Being Hazara is not a crime but an honor we are a single nation and we will not let separation of Afghans,” President Ghani said. The country’s President added that the country’s constitution did not let any dealing on rights of the people, saying that rule of law and republic were their redline and could not dealt as republic was changing them to citizens. Pointing to security of high- ways in particular Bamyan – Maidan Wardak, Jaghori – Qarabagh and Dara-e-Sauf – Mazar-e-Sharif, President Ghani said a working on a security plan was underway and serious attention would be paid in this regard. The country’s President also by pointing to economic development of the country said division of Afghanistan into eight economic zones could maintain developmental and budgetary justice in the country, adding that exports and imports have changed as attention has been paid to exports resources. In the ceremony, second vice president asserted that in 20 provinces of the country, political parties’ elites, cultural organizations, provincial councils and university lecturers were operating and they heard the voice of the people and were trying to prevent from discrimination and disunity among the people.

Saturday, December 07, 2019
Kandahar (BNA) Eleven armed terrorists were killed in a clash by security troops in Kandahar province last night.
The terrorists were suppressed last night in outskirts of Maiwand, and Khakrez district while terrorist activities.
Atal army corps in south of the country with releasing a statement told BNA, eleven terrorists were killed and number of others have been injured.
Several weapons of the terrorists were seized by security troops.
According to another report, police of Kandahar with discovered and defusing of 16 mines prevented from a series of explosions.
No one has been detained in the connection of the case.

Saturday, 07 December 2019 06:49

Regions Clean Up From Insurgents in Kunar

Saturday, December 07, 2019
Asadabad (BNA) Dozens Regions were cleared from insurgents in clearing operation conducted by security troops in Kunar province.
The operation was launched with attendance of hundreds of militaries with support of air forces in parts of Dangam District and still continues.
Selab army corps in east of the country with releasing a statement told BNA, with starting of the operation, dozens of regions were cleared from insurgents.
During the operation till now, five insurgents affiliated to Taliban terrorist group and ISIS fighters were lost their lives and number of others were injured.
According to BNA correspondent from Kunar province, two hideouts of the insurgents were also demolished during the operation.
Another report says, police of Kunar discovered and defused ten mines from crowded roads of the province and prevented from a series of blasts.
Police officials of the province blamed Taliban for the failed mine planting.
T. Yarzada

Friday December 6, 2019
Kabul (BNA) Two decades after fleeing Taliban-ruled Afghanistan with her family, Nadia Nadim is ready to go home.
“I don’t know if it’s ever going be safe,” the Paris Saint-Germain striker said in an interview with The Associated Press. “But I’ll take the chance.”
The risks are worth it for the 31-year-old Nadim, who is planning her first trip back to Afghanistan since leaving the country as a child. She is hoping to change mindsets and inspire girls to follow her onto the soccer field.
“The message I want to deliver to these kids is that everything’s possible and then telling them what they’re doing is not wrong,” Nadim said. “Playing football is not a sin. You’re not doing anything wrong. It’s a sport. It’s something that makes you happy.
“And the people around them, if I can try to teach them or show them that if you love these girls, they can become people like me.”
For Nadim, the chance to become that person only came about because of a family tragedy and a move to Denmark. Her career as an athlete would have been unimaginable in Afghanistan, especially after the Taliban seized control in 1996. Girls were not allowed to go to school, let alone play soccer.
But one day, Nadim’s father — an Afghan military general — was summoned to meet with the Taliban leaders and never returned.
“Growing up in a country where there is war and where girls weren’t really allowed anything, it was extremely hard,” she recalled. “Having my dad killed when I was young and escaping the country was no joke … and I’m just happy that I got a second chance and I made the best out of my second chance.”
The journey to a new life began in 2000 via Pakistan and Italy before being dropped off by a smuggler in Denmark. Asylum was granted after spending six months in a Copenhagen refugee camp, and Nadim discovered her skill for soccer in her adopted homeland.
“I saw the game,” she said, “and I was like, ‘I like it.’”
By 2009, she was playing for the Denmark national team. In 2014, she earned a move to the biggest women’s soccer nation in the world when she was signed by the New Jersey-based Sky Blue.
After spending 2016 and 2017 at Portland Thorns, Nadim spent the following year in England’s top league at Manchester City before securing the move to PSG, which is challenging Lyon for the French title.
“I play in one of the world’s best teams, have people who support me, have brands who support me,” Nadim said, sitting at the London headquarters of her sponsor Visa. “I couldn’t really imagine this when I was younger and one of the reasons is because I’d never seen it before … until I became 15, 16, I realized that’s something I could do.
“But I want this to be something that girls realize that it’s a possibility or have that possibility. It’s not even about being a professional, but about playing football. That’s the day I’m going to be really happy.”
Even in Europe, though, the fight for equality in soccer hasn’t been easy.
A pay dispute in 2017 with the Danish soccer leadership led to the women’s national team going on strike and forcing the cancelation of a World Cup qualifier. The pressure secured a four-year collective bargaining agreement.
“You have to fight for the things you believe in, even though that’s going to cost you,” Nadim said. “That’s what happened with the strike … and us not qualifying for the World Cup. I don’t think we would have done anything differently. I think if you had a chance to redo it, I’ll try to do the same thing, but then try not to miss the World Cup.
“But I think the change we made has been crucial not for me, not for us, but the generations after us. I think everything starts at some point. You have to take a stand and try to change it. I think that’s what we did and I hope that in 10 years, the girls playing are going to be benefiting from it.”
In her homeland, the struggle has been to bring the Afghan soccer leadership to justice after players spoke out about facing repeated sexual abuse.
“They should be proud of themselves, that they came forward and told these stories and took a stand because that’s going to change and help the next generation of girls,” Nadim said. “If they didn’t say anything, the cycle would just continue. That takes a lot of courage. And, for me, they’re really, really brave.”
FIFA this week imposed a five-year ban from soccer on Mohammad Hanif Sediqi Rustam for failing to report complaints over several years. He was a secretarial assistant to Keramuudin Karim, the now-disgraced former soccer federation president, who was banned for life by FIFA in June.
“It’s disgusting that some people would use or abuse their power,” Nadim said.
And Nadim is in awe of the strength of the players taking on figures in authority.
“Sometimes achieving your goals are not supposed to be easy,” she said. “And I hope in the future I can do something for them as well.”
That is part of the reason she is working on organizing that trip back home.
“I’d love to go back and see how everything is, to try to help some of the kids,” she said. “I want this to be something girls realize … you have the access to the game equally as all the boys and then it’s up to you if you want to play or not.”

Friday December 6, 2019
Kabul (BNA) The preparations are in full swing for Rajasthan Royals ahead of the auction for the next year’s IPL. The Royals are still waiting to lay their hands on the IPL trophy since winning the league in the inaugural season in 2008. Since that historic triumph, they have not made it to the final even once and are also one of the most inconsistent teams.
And in a desperate attempt to improve their fortunes, the Royals are leaving no stone unturned in their preparation ahead of the next season. They have already released as many as 11 players ahead of the much-anticipated auction. Left-arm pacer Jaydev Unadkat leads the list of the released players by the franchise.
Other players that have been released are Aryaman Birla, Ashton Turner, Ish Sodhi, Liam Livingstone, Oshane Thomas, Prashant Chopra, Rahul Tripathi, Shubham Ranjane, Stuart Binny and Sudhesan Midhun. The Royals have also let their former skipper Ajinkya Rahane join Delhi Capitals as a part of a trade deal. In return, they have secured the services of Mayank Markande and Rahul Tewatia.
Fast-bowler Dhawan Kulkarni and batsman Krishnappa Gowtham have been traded to Mumbai Indians and Kings XI Punjab respectively. Ankit Rajpoot has joined the Rajasthan-based outfit from Kings XI Punjab. The Royals already boast the likes of Steve Smith, Ben Stokes, Jos Buttler, Jofra Archer and will be looking to further bolster the side in the auction.
Rajasthan Royals have called up a number of players for trials
Ahead of the auction, the Royals have called up a number of players for trials. They recently invited Sussex fast bowler George Garton for trials. And the Royals have also sent their invitation to Afghanistan’s young chinaman spinner Noor Ahmad Lakanwal along with their national team players Naveen ul Haq and Rahmanullah Gurbaz.
Noor Ahmad Lakanwal, who is just 14-year old, made his mark in this year’s ACC U19 Asia Cup. One of his best performances came against India when he picked up 4 for just 14 runs. On the other hand, Naveen and Rahmanullah have already played white-ball cricket for Afghanistan.
Afghani journalist M.Ibrahim Momand revealed the news on Twitter, writing:
“Afghan China-man @LakanwalNoor along with @RGurbaz_21, KarimJanat &  @imnaveenulhaq
are reportedly to feature in a trial match for @rajasthanroyals ahead of @IPL Auction2020.”
Meanwhile, the auction for the next season will take place on December 19 in Kolkata. This is the first time, Kolkata is hosting the auction. All the teams have already announced the list of the players they have retained and released.

The representation office of Qatar Red Crescent Society (QRCS) in Afghanistan has initiated Phase 2 of a project to support education in remote and poor provinces of the country.

Educational aid has been distributed to five schools in Urozgan Province, southern Afghanistan. At a total cost of $180,000, the aid offered included 548 double chairs and desks, 38 classroom tents, 9,500 copies of textbooks, 1,095 school bags with stationery, 300 kits of teaching aids, and five containers to be used as administration offices.
Estimated to benefit up to 1,095 students, the project was co-implemented with the Afghan Welfare Society, in coordination with the Ministry of Education and the Provincial Department of Education. Earlier this year, a memorandum of understanding (MoU) was signed by the three parties to stipulate partnership in all preparations, logistics, selection of beneficiaries, purchase of aid, delivery to the province, and handover to the target schools in the Chora and Tarinkot Districts, central Oruzgan.
During the handover ceremony, attended by parents council members, school directors, and community leaders, Othman Ghani, from a village Shura Council, said this was the first time they received such educational aid. He noted that the parents were so happy because their children would have healthy seats inside safe tents, instead of sitting on the ground, prone to the sun and rain.
Asadullah Shafiq Saeed, Governor of Urozgan, expressed his great gratitude for QRCS’s diverse humanitarian and development aid across Afghanistan, especially the education supplies to the needy schools. This aid, Saeed asserted, would meet the needs of the students in such difficult conditions, promote the development efforts in Afghanistan, and embody the strong relations between the Afghan and Qatari peoples. “I hope that this support would continue and expand to other fields in the future,” he added.

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