13 August 2020

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Wellington, New Zealand – March, 18, 2013
Kabul (BNA) Afghan Foreign Minister Dr Zalmai Rassoul and New Zealand Minister of Foreign Affairs Murray McCully met today in Wellington to discuss the bilateral relationship between Afghanistan and New Zealand. Minister Rassoul is on a two-day official visit to New Zealand.
The Ministers solemnly acknowledged the shared losses of both nations in the pursuit of a peaceful, prosperous and democratic Afghanistan. Dr. Rassoul expressed the profound gratitude of the Afghan people and government to Minister McCully for New Zealand’s support and friendship with Afghanistan over the past decade.
In their discussions, the Ministers agreed that a new chapter will soon start in the two countries’ relationship, with New Zealand withdrawing its Provincial Reconstruction Team in Bamyan province in April, in line with the transition process in Afghanistan.
Both Ministers noted that New Zealand has led the PRT in Bamyan since 2003 and has achieved much during the 10-year deployment. The PRT has contributed to international counter-terrorism efforts and improved security, development and governance in the province.
Minister McCully confirmed that New Zealand would remain committed to Afghanistan and would continue to play its part in international efforts to support the country. He briefed Minister Rassoul on New Zealand’s ongoing military commitments to Afghanistan, including 8 NZDF trainers to the Afghan National Army Officer Academy, 12 NZDF personnel working at the ISAF Special Operations Forces mainly in intelligence and planning roles, and a small number of officers based at the headquarters of the International Security Assistance Force, the United Nations Assistance Mission to Afghanistan and in New Zealand’s national support element.
The Ministers discussed New Zealand’s development programme in Bamyan, which would continue beyond the withdrawal of the PRT, and in line with the development priorities of the Afghan government. This includes the Renewable Energy Project (US$20 million) and the Agriculture Support Project (US$3.7 million).
Minister McCully also noted New Zealand’s in principle commitment of US$2 million a year from 2015 to the Afghan National Security Forces for rule of law projects in Bamyan.
The Ministers agreed on the importance of working together to promote sustainable economic development for a stable, secure and prosperous future in Afghanistan.
Both Ministers agreed that New Zealand and Afghanistan have forged a bond from shared sacrifice and a commitment to peace and security.

The Ministers agreed to look for opportunities in the future for exchanges on both the bilateral relationship and international issues of mutual interest.

Wednesday, March 20, 2013
Kabul (BNA) President Hamid Karzai, leading a high-level delegation, left today before noon for Ashgabat the Capital of Turkmenistan to attend an international event titled “Nowruz– Festival of Peace and Humanism”.
On the sideline of the Festival, President Karzai is scheduled to meet with some state leaders including Presidents of Turkmenistan and Tajikistan to discuss how to enhance regional cooperation.
Last year, Nowruz International Festival was held in Dushanbe the Capital of Tajikistan and the year before last in Tehran the Capital of Iran.
On this visit, the President is accompanied by National Security Advisor Dr. Rangin Spanta, Minister of Public Affairs Najibullah Ozhan, Presidential Advisor in International Relations Dr. Mohammad Yahya Marufi, Advisor to the President in Religious Affairs Mawlavi Jorah Taheri, Deputy Chief of Staff to the President Homaira Lodin Etmadi and Presidential Spokesperson Aimal Faizi.

Wednesday, March 20, 2013
Kabul (BNA) Aimal Faizi, spokesman to the President of Afghanistan rejects NATO Secretary General’s statement about President Karzai’s recent remarks and called NATO’s war in Afghanistan aimless.
Speaking to the state news agency, BNA, Faizi said, “the people of Afghanistan ask NATO to define the purpose and aim of the so-called war on terror, as they question why after a decade, this war in their country has failed to achieve its stated goals, but rather has resulted in the loss of thousands of innocent lives and destruction of their homes.”
Faizi added, “The people of Afghanistan ask NATO Secretary General that while it is clearly known to NATO that terrorism sanctuaries are outside Afghanistan, why this war then continues in their homes and villages unproductively?”
Therefore, the Afghan people consider this war as aimless and unwise to continue.

Wednesday, March 20, 2013
Kabul (BNA) The heads of Human Resources departments held a two-day meeting in the ministry of rural development and rehabilitation, here yesterday.
In the meeting which also attended by Wais Barmak, the minister for rural development and rehabilitation and general director of independent commission for administrative reforms, Dr. Ahmad Mushahid, the matters pertaining administrative reforms, civil services and the challenges ahead were discussed.
In his address Dr. Mushahid pointed out that since 98 percent of employments in government departments are taking place by the directors of human resources departments, they should be very careful in employing the employees.
Mushahid also stated the process of capacity building is going on, saying implementation of the process would check nepotism in employing people within the government departments.