14 December 2017

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Monday December 11, 2017

Kabul (BNA) The prosecutor of the International Criminal Court is calling for an investigation into possible war crimes and crimes against humanity in Afghanistan.
The scope of such an investigation isn't clear, but it could have the potential to involve U.S. troops. Fatou Bensouda said in a statement that she has decided to request authorization to open a formal investigation. ICC judges would then decide whether the situation meets the court's criteria. Pentagon spokesman Eric Pahon told NPR: "Our view is clear: An ICC investigation with respect to U.S. personnel would be wholly unwarranted and unjustified. More broadly, our overall assessment is that commencement of an ICC investigation will not serve the interests of either peace or justice in Afghanistan." Bensouda said the court's jurisdiction for crimes committed in Afghanistan extends to May 1, 2003. Friday's statement doesn't name specific parties or incidents that would potentially be investigated. But a report released by the prosecutor's office last year says there is a "reasonable basis" to believe the following crimes have occurred:
"Crimes against humanity and war crimes by the Taliban and their affiliated Haqqani Network; "War crimes of torture and related ill-treatment by Afghan government forces, in particular the intelligence agency (National Directorate for Security), and the Afghan National Police; "War crimes of torture and related ill-treatment, by US military forces deployed to Afghanistan and in secret detention facilities operated by the Central Intelligence Agency, principally in the 2003-2004 period, although allegedly continuing in some cases until 2014." According to Bensouda's statement, the investigation would also include "war crimes closely linked to the situation in Afghanistan allegedly committed since 1 July 2002 on the territory of other States Parties to the Rome Statute," the international treaty that established the ICC.
A probe into Afghanistan would be a first for the court, which was established when the Rome Statute took effect in 2002. Previous ICC cases have focused on defendants from African countries, a source of criticism for the international legal body. The ICC is also investigating the armed conflict in Georgia. The U.S. initially signed the Rome Statute under the Clinton administration but never ratified it, citing concerns that it would be used to prosecute U.S. citizens unfairly. However, the ICC would still be able to investigate, the BBC adds, because "Afghanistan is a member, and the court's jurisdiction covers crimes committed on any member state's territory regardless of the nationality of the perpetrator." At the same time, "legal experts have said the chances of American service members being charged and sent to face justice at the ICC are remote," according to The Associated Press.
Bensouda's report last year stated that there is a "reasonable basis to believe" that U.S. armed forces members subjected "at least 61 detained persons to torture, cruel treatment, outrages upon personal dignity on the territory of Afghanistan between 1 May 2003 and 31 December 2014." It added that it has reason to believe that CIA members carried out similar acts against at least 27 detained persons "on the territory of Afghanistan and other State Parties to the Statute (namely Poland, Romania and Lithuania) between December 2002 and March 2008." The report also blamed the Taliban and other anti-government armed groups for "more than 17,000 civilian deaths in the period between January 2007 and December 2015." Pahon said the U.S. supports accountability for crimes committed by the Taliban and "other serious crimes in Afghanistan." He added: "However, we have long believed and stated that justice is most effective when it is delivered at the local level."
Npr.Org
 

Monday, December 11, 2017

Kabul (BNA) The continuation of such a situation, without doubt decreases the trust and confidence of people to security and intelligence organs.
BNA security affairs analyst commenting on the issue writes slaughtering all the members of a family in Panjsad Family residential area has caused concerns of the residents of the capital.
Four armed men in military uniform at night time invaded in to a house and brutally slaughtered all members of a family including women and children while they were asleep.  
What have happened in Panjsad Family are among dozens criminal acts that occur daily in the capital.
We have been witness of many criminal acts during the recent days and months in Kabul from killing and abducting traders to physical violence and robbery. All these inhuman and barbaric acts indicate that the capital is experiencing a terrible security situation.
In spite of that security authorities claim that the Panjsad Family incident is the result of personal and family disputes but this kind of reasoning cannot acquit them from their responsibilities and not justifiable.
We accept that teen members of a family became the victim of a family dispute, but it would be questionable how the invaders accessed to automatic weapon and used military uniform and how they interned the house and after several hours of killing and looting leave the scene?
The relatives of the victims claim that in the first moments of the incident at 1: 00 am they informed police but they reached the scene after three hours. Although the security authorities deny the claim but there reasoning is not justifiable.
The recent incident and other similar incidents occurred during the recent days and months indicate that beside terrorist incidents like suicide attacks and explosions criminal incidents are the major part of concerns the residents of the capital suffering from.
The presence of armed individuals, police call them irresponsible armed people in tangible in the city.
Some people claim that most of police personnel have been appointed due to their links to higher authorities not according to criteria set up for employments.
The existence of such a wide gap in security organs and incapability of intelligence and security personnel indicate that there is a poor management in security affairs in Kabul. If as the interior minister promised, firm steps be taken for reforming the situation, the residents of Kabul who are suffering from insecurity will enjoy living in a peaceful and safe atmosphere very soon, otherwise, their miseries will continue as before.    
Abdul Khalil Minawi
BNA Director General
 

Monday December 11, 2017

Pul-e-Khumri City (BNA) At least three Afghan National Army personnel have died following traffic accident in northern Baghlan province yesterday.
Zabihullah Shoja spokesman of police headquarters in Baghlan told BNA correspondent, the soldiers lost their lives, while their Humvee vehicle smashed with a fuel tanker in Kelagi area, Doshi district of Baghlan province.
In addition, six other Afghan National Army troops and driver of tanker fuel were wounded following the event, the source added.
The injured of the incident timely shifted to near hospital for treatment.
T/M.A.Ansari
 

Monday, 11 December 2017 06:49

President Assesses Badghis Situations

Monday, December 11, 2017

Kabul (BNA) The Presidential Palace, in a statement, said that the country’s president, Mohammad Ashraf Ghani, after his arrival in Badghis province, attended the inauguration ceremony of Qaisar-Laman road building’s first and second phases, the other day.
The statement quoted the president as saying the project, after completion would lay positive impact on the province’s economy, electricity would be provided for the people and wide change would be witnessed in the province next years.
The president also said implementation of Mazar-Herat railway project would also lay positive impact on the province, according the statement.
Security issue has also been discussed by the related organs with the president, and he praised the country’s security forces for suppressing the enemies of the people and the country and called for close coordination to go ahead with the goals.
 

Monday, 11 December 2017 06:47

New Cabinet Ministers Take Oath

Monday, December 11, 2017

Kabul (BNA) Swearing in ceremony of 11 new ministers of the cabinet of national unity government obtaining recently vote of confidence by Lower House of parliament was held yesterday at presidential palace.
In the ceremony attended also by chief executive Dr. Abdullah Abdullah, minister of national defense Tariq Shah Bahrami, minister of interior Wais Ahmad Barmak, minister of telecommunication and information technology Shahzad Aryoubi, minister of economy Mustafa Mastoor, minister of borders and tribes Gul Agha Shirzai, minister of agriculture and irrigation Nasir Ahmad Durani, minister of rural rehabilitation and rural development Mujeeb Rahman Karimi, minister of transport and civil aviation Mohammad Hamid Tuhmasi, minister of higher education Dr. Najibullah Khwaja Omari, minister of labor, social affairs and martyrs Faizullah Zaki and minister of public works Yama Yari took oath as ministers of NUG cabinet. At the end of the ceremony, President Mohammad Ashraf Ghani while congratulating the ministers praised Lower House of parliament for vote of confidence to the ministers. “I hope that in future women can also get vote of confidence so that we can show our commitment to the country’s constitution,” said the country’s President, adding that national unity government has had good achievements in foreign policy, but in domestic sector the people were anticipating a responsive government.
 

Monday, December 11, 2017

Kabul (BNA) A number of the country’s Ulema, on Saturday evening, met with President of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan and praised his timely announcing of Afghanistan’s stance against the US move to transfer its embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, the Presidential Press Office said in a statement, the other day.
Representing others, Mawlavi Enayatullah Baligh spoke at the meeting and appreciated the president for his consultation with the country’s ulema with regard to the country’s great and important issues.
He said peaceful protests against the US hasty plan to officially recognize Jerusalem as the Israeli capital, have been staged all over the country, under the country’s wise ulema plan and no violent has been taken place, the statement quoted.
The country’s president lauded them of the wise leadership of the peaceful demonstration and said that in the past protest were turning violent, but, ‘you did them wisely recently,’ the statement added.
The president said that Jerusalem, the Holy Quds and Palestine were important for the Muslims and so he had shared the issue with the US authorities and other world countries, according to the statement.
He said the rights of the Muslim people of Palestine should be secured and the government of Afghanistan had a clear cut declaration in this field.
 

Monday, December 11, 2017

Kabul (BNA) Chief Executive, Dr. Abdullah Abdullah on Sunday strongly condemned violence against women and said anti-women violations are still continuing in many provinces of the country, including the capital Kabul, said a statement from Sapidar Palace.
The CE said: “However women situation is not comparable with that of before the last 16 years, and big improvement have been brought in their rights and conditions, but still they facing harsh violence in many provinces.”
He asked government institutions and other related organs as well as the women activists to join hand for protection of women rights all over the country and that to help promote their authority from a ministry level to the wider ones, including high decision and policy making processes, the statement added. Dr. Abdullah Thanked the International Community for providing cooperation with the government of Afghanistan to enhance women capacity and ensure their rights, said that enough time was needed to do more in this field. Touching on peace issue, the CE lauded the country’s security forces effort to defend the country’s territorial integrity and national sovereignty, but said peace was a dire need of the Afghan people and peace with the government opposition doesn’t mean pummeling of the people rights. He said if the Taliban give up war and violence and respect the country’s constitution and the people rights and wanted to have political office in Kabul, no impediment should be imposed and those Taliban are joining peace process, shouldn’t be insulted, however he said plan to open office for the Taliban is still on the table with no ground provided.
 

Monday, December 11, 2017

Kabul (BNA) English learning course was launched yesterday for 30 employees of ministry of information and culture.
The course was held by capacity building department of the ministry. Opening the course, deputy minister of finance, administrative and tourism Sayeda Mojgan Mustafavi said the course would continue for six months.
She stressed that 4 million Afghani was allocated annually for holding such programs, but unfortunately the allocated money has not been spent in this regard in past years.
“This year we have been able to have 30 students in the country’s three top universities. We have a plan to introduce 30 employees to Kabul University for master degree,” Mustafavi added.
She further said that those who were about to be retired and working in top positions could participate in entry test of master degree at Kabul University.
Director of human resources for MoIC asked participants in the course to attend the course and make use of the given opportunity.
 

Monday, December 11, 2017

Kabul (BNA) Prof. Mohammad Rasoul Bawari, deputy minister of culture and art and acting minister of information and culture in a meeting with a delegation tasked by presidential office for overall reviewing directorate of Afghan Film assured of cooperation towards implementation of law and transparency. 
Recently, based on verdict of President of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan, a government delegation led by representative of Attorney General Office (AGO) and membership of authorized representatives of Ministry of Finance (MoF), Independent Administrative Reforms and Civil Services Commission (IARCSC), National Directorate of Security (NDS) and National Procurement Authority (NPA) has been tasked to completely review financial affairs, procurement,  structural formation, human resources and working processes of the directorate of Afghan film during 2015-2016.  The delegation is tasked to deliver its report and issues along with particular suggestive plans to presidential office within two months.
 

Monday, December 11, 2017

Sheberghan (BNA) Jawzjan police have detained two suspects in charge of drug-trafficking. 
According to provincial police chief of Jawzjan Faqir Mohammad Jawzjani, the individuals have been detained with 483 kg poppy and a corolla vehicle in Dasht-e-Bargah area of Sheberghan city.
He added in 27 separate operations conducted during the current year, more than 2450 kg drugs, seven vehicles and arms have been confiscated and 38 suspects introduced to attorney general office.
 

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