29 March 2017

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Sunday March 19, 2017

Kabul (BNA) Japan’s newly-appointed ambassador to Kabul Mitsuji Suzuka called on second vice president Sarwar Danesh yesterday.
In the meeting, issues as peace talks, holding parliamentary elections, counter corruption and reforms in judicial organs were discussed. Second vice president by pointing to mutual diplomatic relations between Afghanistan and Japan that were historic stressed on expansion of bilateral relations in political, cultural and economic fields between the two countries, adding that cooperation of Japan were useful in disarmament, reconstruction and development sectors during the past 10 years. Related to holding elections, second vice president said practical discussions have been recently held in this field and it was anticipated that final decision would be soon taken in this regard. He further said that national unity government was determined that parliamentary and district councils elections would be held during the current year (2017) and electoral technology might be used for holding the process, but any kind decision in this regard needed further discussion and review as well as assistance and cooperation of the international community.
In the meeting, Japanese ambassador to Kabul Mitsuji Suzuka by insisting on expansion of bilateral relations between the two countries in various fields stressed on serious counter corruption effort, adding that one of conditions for providing the international assistance to Afghanistan was to effectively fight the phenomenon. The Japanese ambassador welcomed recent developments in connection with counter corruption and reforms in judicial organs, saying that national unity government has taken effective steps in counter corruption, but it was anticipated that further efforts should be made in this regard.  He said that his government was determined to provide training and capacity building opportunity for counter-corruption judicial center. He also stressed on holding fair and transparent elections and said that Japan government was ready to provide assistance to the process.

Saturday March 18, 2017

Kabul (BNA) India and Afghanistan on Thursday committed themselves to the early establishment of an air cargo link to overcome the obstacles being created by Pakistan in the smooth conduct of trade between them.
Afghanistan Deputy Foreign Minister Hekmat Karzai, who is on a visit to India to attend the International Counter Terrorism Conference, today held talks with Minister of State for External Affairs M J Akbar, Foreign Secretary S Jaishankar and Amar Sinha, Secretary (Economic Relations) in the MEA on a range of bilateral issues. According to MEA spokesperson Gopal Baglay, Karzai apprised the Indian side of the current situation in Afghanistan and the efforts being made by the government towards peace and reconciliation in the country.
The Indian side reiterated its commitment to continue to support the government and the people of Afghanistan in their efforts to build a peaceful, stable, prosperous, and united country within which the democratic and pluralistic aspirations of people of country are met. Both sides exchanged views on the situation in Afghanistan and reviewed progress in implementation of the development cooperation projects and the decisions taken during the visits of President Ashraf Ghani to India last year to attend the Heart of Asia conference. In response to a question, the spokesperson said discussions on the air corridor were going on between the two sides and making satisfactory progress. The need for an air corridor was felt since Pakistan does not allow Indian trucks to transit through its territory to Afghanistan.
The Statesman

Saturday March 18, 2017

Kabul (BNA) President Mohammad Ashraf Ghani heard the reports of the presidential administrative affairs performances presented by the related leadership in a meeting held at the presidential palace the other day, his office said.
According to the statement, the president, after hearing the report, hailed them for their hard work to institutionalize governance system through a data management system and bringing reforms and emphasized on the simplification of the administrative process in the center and other provinces of the country.

Saturday March 18, 2017

Kabul (BNA) President Ghani received Herati elders, representatives, Members of Parliament and members of the provincial council in the Presidential Palace on Wednesday, his office said in a statement. According to the statement, the elders and representatives spoke of problems pertaining to environment, security, health, education, and society. They also aired their suggestions on these issues. To start with, MPs Eng. Manawar Shah Bahaduri and Masooda Karokhi commended President Ghani for his concentration on important public projects, especially the Salma Dam, Chesht-e-Sharif road and other big projects which were recently started, the statement further said.
They expressed their problems with respect to increase in criminal activities, diminished urban services, paucity of Pashto textbooks for Pashto-speaking localities and nomadic people’s inaccessibility to schools and health facilities. They demanded the President‘s attention in order for these issues to be addressed, the statement added. Haji Mohammad Shah Khan and Haji Ghulam Faroq Khan, in turn spoke on behalf of Herat-based tribes. They reassured the President of their commitment of supporting the Government and National Defense and Security Forces, under all circumstances for defense of Afghanistan. They stated their satisfaction with activities of the Judiciary and Attorney General Office, reiterating that positive reforms should be introduced in the rest of Herat province institutions.
They asked the President to provide Herati cadre with opportunities of contributing to the Government which will enhance a sense of national collaboration and support of Herati people to the Government, the statement continued. Pointing to the recent dispute between head of provincial council and appellate prosecution directorate of Herat Province, they asked President Ghani to pay attention in addressing the case. They appealed to the President to grant pardon to head of the provincial council on the case of misunderstanding. Afterwards, the President thanked the Herati elders and representatives for supporting plans and programs of the Government. He said that compared to any other place; he has paid special attention to Herat during these two and a half years.
On case of head of Herat provincial council, the President said that he got the message, adding that though the issue is related legal and judicial institutions. The President also talked about organizational reforms, saying that all cadres around the country will be picked out and hired in the earliest. President Ghani asked the representatives for their cooperation with the local administration in prevention of corruption. He assured them that their suggestions will be attended to by the concerned institutions. The President said that the Government is focused on development projects in addition to security. He added that Herat province will be connected with neighboring countries through the opening of railways, therefore, it will turn into a commercial hub.

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