15 July 2020

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Monday July 6, 2020
Kabul (BNA) Secretary General of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) Dr. Yousef bin Ahmed Al-Othaimeen said that all parties in Afghanistan need to focus their attention on peace efforts, amid the recent surge in violence, in Afghanistan.
He deplored all acts of violence and urged all parties to exercise maximum restraint, to achieve a sustainable ceasefire and realize the long awaited peace by the people of Afghanistan.
Noting, on the other hand, the positive developments towards dialogue, the Secretary General called on all Afghans to redouble their efforts exerted, to achieve long lasting peace and reconciliation, in the country.
By reiterating the firm commitment of the OIC to stand by the people of Afghanistan, Al-Othaimeen concluded his statement.
Spa
Ansari

Monday July 6, 2020
Kabul (BNA) Foodstuffs have been distributed to 350 poor and needy families in eastern Nangarhar province.
Press office of Nangarhar’s governor by releasing a statement reported, the aids have been provided by World Food Program (WFP) and distributed to the families, those affected during COVID-19 outbreak.
The distribution assistances include, flour, cooking ghee, pea, sugar and salt, the statement added.
M.A.Ansari

Saturday, July 4, 2020
Kabul (BNA) Acting Minister of Foreign Affairs Mohammad Haneef Atmar held a telephone conversation with British Ambassador to Afghanistan, Ms Alison Blake CMG.
At the onset, both sides exchanged views on the global experience of the COVID-19 pandemic and deliberated the impacts it has had on Afghanistan and the United Kingdom.
The main topic of discussion was the Afghan peace process. Both sides also exchanged views on the latest developments in the peace process such as concerns on the increase in the level of violence, the mechanisms needed for monitoring a reduction of violence, release of prisoners by the Government of Afghanistan and the Taliban, and the importance of beginning Intra-Afghan negotiation.
Minister Atmar and Ambassador Blake also deliberated the importance of regional and international engagement and the need for consensus on the Afghan peace process.
The British Ambassador reiterated the support of the British government for an Afghan-led and Afghan-owned peace process.
M.A.Ansari

Saturday, July 4, 2020
Herat (BNA) The first raisin processing factory was opened in Herat.
The factory is capable of processing and packing up to two hundred tons of raisins a day.
Jelani Farhad spokesman for Herat governor told BNA, the opening of the factory, along with job creation for 200 workers, will increase the amount of raisin processing in Herat to 3,000 tons.
The construction of the factory has cost five hundred thousand dollars for Ministry of Agriculture.
However, the construction of the factory has raised hopes of increasing raisin exports to world markets.
T. Yarzada

Saturday, July 4, 2020
Jalalabad (BNA) Executive director of Sorkhrud District, Nangarhar, was lost his life in a magnetic mine blast.
Abdul Wasy Antezar executive director of Surkhrud district was lost his life in a magnetic mine blast placed in his vehicle in first district of Jalalabad city.
It is said that so far no individual or group has claimed the responsibility of the mine blast.
T. Yarzada

Saturday, July 4, 2020
Asadabad (BNA) Twenty-six armed oppositions were killed in recent conflicts in Kunar.
The insurgents were targeted by air and ground raids of Afghan security forces in parts of the province in the last two days.
ANA senior official in east of country told BNA, in the conflicts, 26 insurgents including their 4 senior commanders were killed and dozens others have been injured.
The insurgents were targeted after they attacked on security troops
T. Yarzada

 

Saturday, July 4, 2020
Kandahar (BNA) Six civilians were lost their lives in explosion of a mine in Kandahar.
According to reports, a vehicle carrying the civilians hit a roadside mine in a main road in Shahwalikot District late yesterday.
Atal army corps press office in south of country with releasing a statement said, six civilians including three children, two women and a driver of the vehicle were lost their lives in the blast.
Atal army corps of the province blamed Taliban for the mine planting.
T. Yarzada


 

Saturday, July 4, 2020
Kabul (BNA) Acting and nominee minister of information and culture, Mohammad Taher Zuhair, paid a visit to the National Archive on Thursday and said that the manuscripts in the National Archive were unique in the region.
The acting minister of Information and Culture said that the problems and lack of facilities will be solved soon in the Archive.
He also said that the National Archive shows the historical glory of Afghanistan.
During the meeting, Director of National Archive, Afsar Rahbin, provided information on manuscripts and relics in the National Archive, saying that a new plan had been put in place for the Archive which also pointed out to the problems and shortcomings in the organization.
Yarzada


 

Saturday, July 4, 2020
Kabul (BNA(Presidents Mohammad Ashraf Ghani virtually discussed a set of issues pertaining to regional connectivity, trade and transportation as well as peace and regional response to covid-19 with President Ilham Aliyev of Azerbaijan and President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov of Turkmenistan, yesterday morning, a statement said.
Having welcomed his two counterparts, President Ghani expressed gratitude to them for their multifaceted cooperation with Afghanistan, particularly on revival and operationalization of the Lapis Lazuli Corridor, calling it a transformative program, the presidential press office said. President Ghani expressed gratitude to President of Turkmenistan for extending railway to two dry ports of Aqeena and Torghundi, establishing two corona testing laboratories, and his quick decisions to ensure flow of goods through remain uninterrupted.
The president also praised President Aliyev for hosting the Online Non-Aligned Movement Summit in response to Covid-19, adding that it was important to support the stance of the movement vis-à-vis covid-19. President Ashraf Ghani welcomed President Aliyev’s suggestions on formation of a joint task force at the level of transport and other relevant ministries from the three countries for further improvement of regional connectivity, railway, and fiber optics.
President Ghani suggested if the joint group reports to the three Presidents every quarter to draw attention of the leadership to ensure addressing the issues quickly and to ensure that work at the level of bureaucracies does not stop this initiative.
The president said Afghanistan is ready to extend joint cooperation with public and private sectors of Azerbaijan and Turkmenistan and invited Azeri and Turkmen firms to join ventures with Afghanistan, particularly in the areas of marble and agriculture, referring to the government’s program to bring 1.4 million hectares of land under cultivation. President Ghani asked his Azeri and Turkmen counterparts to simplify customs processes for Afghan traders.
He termed availability railway significant in trade and transit and said there is a need to build around 4 to 6 thousand of kilometers railways to really integrate the region.
The president said that public and private sector of Azerbaijan and Turkmenistan could make investment on mine exploration in Afghanistan, suggesting that their ministers work with the Afghan side in investment portfolio.
The president said the government is creating standard dry ports in eight points in Afghanistan, adding that the US Development Finance Cooperation, European Union and ADB are willing to offer guarantees. He added, “We have also developed very important trade and energy. In addition to TAPI, our goal is to create an energy corridor from Azerbaijan to Afghanistan and potentially expand it to Pakistan and India.” “Linking Azerbaijan to this fiber optic corridor will change the face of interactions between South Asia and Central Asia connecting us with Europe and including china so it is very important adjustment to be take,” said the President.
The president said the government is committed to peace and has made sincere efforts to bring sustainable peace to the country, underlining that the Afghan Foreign Ministry is going to have a meeting with 18 neighbor countries, near and far, as part of a regional approach to receive support of the countries in the region. President Ilham Aliyev of Azerbaijan expressed his gratitude over holding the trilateral virtual meeting, terming it beneficent for discussing cooperation and its future development.
He added that Azerbaijan has participated in NATO’s peacekeeping mission in Afghanistan since 2002 and contributed to peace and stability in Afghanistan by providing troops, multi-model transit, trading and financial assistance. President of Azerbaijan said with the Lapis Lazuli Route connected to Baku, the shipment of cargo from Afghanistan to Azerbaijan via Turkmenistan and onward in western direction has become possible.
He added that the coronavirus disease being the most acute problem of present spread all over the world and entail tragic consequences, and stressed that solidarity and cooperation between the countries on the bilateral level, and the international organizations are important during the pandemic. Ilham Aliyev said Azerbaijan has taken additional measures to ensure transportation of goods, international shipping through the east-west transportation corridor has remain uninterrupted.
The Azeri President suggested convening of a working level meeting between the transportation bodies over countries to evaluate the outcome of this particular meeting and our future steps.
President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov of Turkmenistan considered the meeting a great opportunity to exchange views on strategically important aspects of cooperation, particularly partnership in transportation and communication areas. He underscored that the three countries had active cooperation in international efforts in countering the corona disease. President Berdimuhamedov said upon spread of the virus, the three countries tried to create condition for continuation of transit and transport activities across the border amidst the spread of the pandemic, expressing gratitude to Afghanistan and Azerbaijan for supporting Turkmenistan’s initiative to deal with the corona virus and mitigate the social-economic consequences.
The Turkmen President said, “We have created new mechanisms corresponding to the current situation which have enabled us and our neighbors to ensure the safe movement of vehicles and freights among countries and the region. We have also taken measures to control disease spread along borders.”
He said Afghanistan, Turkmenistan and Azerbaijan are united by common history, culture and tradition and continue to solidify their relations, calling peace, security and mutual understanding valuable between the three states and their peoples. President of Turkmenistan stressed on implementation of a common tariff policy, creation of an integrated logistics center, availability of modern high-tech transport infrastructure, simplification of customs processes, and necessity to prepare the digital address of Afghanistan, Turkmenistan, Azerbaijan route as an effort to ensure efficiency of freight transportation.
President Ghani once again expressed gratitude to his counterparts for attending the online trilateral summit and said our common economic future are tied together and its requires comprehensive cooperation.
The president welcomed their suggestions including formation of a joint task forces, creation of common tariff policy, streamlining customs processes, establishment of joint logistics center, availability of high-tech transport infrastructure and other suggestions and described them as advantageous factors for improvement of regional connectivity, trade, transit and efficiency of freight transportation. President Ghani said, “Turkmenistan and Azerbaijan are emerging as regional hubs.”
He added that Baku and Tukmenbashi and facilities around the Caspian have become the port of choice for Afghanistan. The president said “Railroad has proven its value during the time of corona, because while transport by trucks is important but rail has been our lifeline.” President Ghani stressed alignment in terms of customs processes between the three countries and said Azerbaijan and Turkmenistan’s leadership in terms of this and exchange of information thought a secured system is crucial to enable us move forward. “
The two ports of Aqeena and Torghundi are ready and we are ready to move forward through joint cooperation with both public and private sectors of Azerbaijan and Turkmenistan,” added the president. and also public sector. The president at the end proposed organizing online meeting of the heads of transport and agencies in our countries in July this year in order to work in detail on formation of the joint task force.
Yarzada

 

Saturday, July 4, 2020
Kabul (BNA)  Zalmay Khalilzad, Special Representative of the United States to Afghanistan’s Reconciliation, has said that in a recent virtual meeting with President Mohammad Ashraf Ghani and Dr. Abdullah Abdullah, head of the High Council for National Reconciliation, that removing obstacles from the path of the intra-Afghan negotiations would be key to success of the process. Khalilzad was joined by CEO of US International Development Finance Corporation Adam Boehler in this meeting.
“On peace, we emphasized the immediate step is to rapidly resolve the remaining issues surrounding the start of intra-Afghan negotiations. Delay provides opportunities for spoilers,” Khalilzad said. “
We discussed the importance of quick-hit programs as well as longer term infrastructure programs that will provide significant employment opportunities.
Power and health care are two critical areas that merit support.
They help with economic development and improve peoples' quality of life,” he said. Khalilzad said they share a common view that economic benefits of peace far outweigh benefits of war.
“A sustainable peace can mean investment with less risk, lower cost and faster capital deployment,” he said. “Investment is possible only if Afghan leaders make the decisions conducive for economic development. We also emphasized the importance of regional economic development and prosperity,” Khalilzad added.
The intra-Afghan negotiations were expected in the near future but critics say the prisoners' release is a main issue that has resulted in multiple delays in the process.
Yarzada

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