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Friday November 29, 2019
Kabul (BNA) Statement by H.E. Adela Raz,
Ambassador and Permanent Representative of the I.R. of Afghanistan At the General Assembly on the adoption of Resolution on the Situation in Afghanistan
27November 2019
New York
Mr. President,
Thank you for convening this meeting to adopt the resolution on the Situation in Afghanistan.
Allow me to express my gratitude to the German Mission as a longtime facilitator of this very important resolution for Afghanistan, particularly Ambassador Christoph Heusgen, and his team, specifically Counsellor Friedrich Schroeder, for their leadership and able facilitation. Germany is one of the longstanding supporters of the Afghan people, and a genuine partner and ally in the efforts for ensuring peace, security, and prosperity in Afghanistan.
I also would like to extend my appreciation to the representatives of all other Member States, who participated in the discussions, demonstrated flexibility and supported this resolution through active contributions, especially those states that co-sponsored the resolution.
Mr. President,
As we adopt this annual resolution on the Situation in Afghanistan, let me speak about some major political, security and socio-economic developments since the adoption of the resolution last year. These include holding of the presidential and parliamentary elections, the pursuit of peace and reconciliation efforts and the implementation of the reform agenda to achieve self-reliance.
On the Election, against the backdrop of serious security threats, the parliamentary elections were held on the 20th of October 2018, where 4.6 million Afghans voted. The new Parliament was inaugurated on the 26th of April 2019, where about 60% of the new members are the younger generation, below the age of 40, and about 25-28 percent are women.
This was another important step for strengthening and sustaining democracy in Afghanistan. Through their votes, the people of Afghanistan once again proved that no threat can ever hinder their strong will for consensus and that the essence of democracy is the corner stone of the new Afghanistan.
Following the parliamentary elections, on September 28, we held our fourth Presidential Election. Despite threats of violence and attacks, and in some cases, risking having their fingers cut off by the Taliban, people still came out to vote. For Afghans, this wasn’t simply a vote to elect the future president, but rather a vote for democracy and a vote for the Republic. People voted to defend the constitution and the sovereignty of the state; and they voted for the prosperity and stability of Afghanistan. For two million Afghans, their vote was their power to say No to Terrorism and Yes for Peace.
The Afghan National Defense and Security Forces participated in both elections with the utmost professionalism and bravery by protecting the constitutional right of every Afghan to vote. About 70,000 of our courageous soldiers safeguarded our people during this historical moment, and due to their effective measures and competence, most attacks were averted.
For the majority in here, elections and voting are a granted right and those who participate, perform their civic duty. For Afghans it is beyond a civic duty, it is our civic power that we can exercise equally to define the destiny of the New Afghanistan. 
Here I would like to pause and congratulate our friends and allies, particularly NATO-member countries, who have stood by us during the past 18 years, as we took our journey of rebuilding this New Afghanistan.
You all invested in, with your blood and treasure, our pursuit of democracy and stability in Afghanistan and now there should be no doubt of our commitment to those values and principles.
Peace is an important priority for the people and government of Afghanistan. It was in February of 2018 that President Ghani made the first call of an unconditional offer for peace talks with the Taliban. Following the “unconditional offer for peace talks” in June of that year we saw a three -day ceasefire which showed the true ability of our society. Afghans absorbed the 20,000 Taliban who came to our big cities during the 3-days celebration of Eid holidays. This helped us see that reaching peace and an end to conflict is possible.
Mr. President,
As we know, the success of every peace deal is in its sustainability and duration. This can only be accomplished if the public is involved, engaged, and consulted. For the government, in order to identify the framework for negotiations, a nationwide consultation was necessary. To do so, the government took the important step to arrange the consultative peace Jirga.
In April 2019, 3,200 representatives from every part of country participated in the Jirga to highlight their mandate for peace. The five-day Consultative Peace Jirga, of which 30% of the delegates were women, adopted a national Road Map and a mandate for peace. This Road Map was decisive in its parameters, calling for, amongst others, an immediate ceasefire, the call for a sustainable peace and direct talks with the government of Afghanistan, and the preservation of human rights, particularly women’s rights.
Women’s constitutional rights are an important feature of the New Afghanistan. As the Secretary General has said, the preservation and protection of women’s is not the only good thing to do, but the “right thing to do” for an effective, meaningful and lasting peace. 
The government of Afghanistan welcomes all regional and international peace efforts which align with an Afghan-led and Afghan-owned peace process that can help to facilitate the direct talks with the Taliban. In line with international norms, we firmly believe in the principles of respecting sovereignty and state-to-state relations and hold these values central to the success of our peace efforts.
We would like to thank our friends and allies that have supported our work to reach a dignified and sustainable peace, including the United States, the European Union, Germany, Norway, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, the State of Qatar, the United Arab Emirates, Indonesia, and Uzbekistan among others.
Mr. President,
On the security situation, the Taliban and other transnational terrorist groups have continued to be relentless and violent to in their mission to spread terror and fear. Our National Security and Defense Forces have proved their ability to successfully defend our country in most courageous way, thwarting many attacks and protecting our people.
The Afghan soldier that fights today eliminates the threat posed to all of us globally. As we have said before, terrorism does not recognize boundaries and borders; it threatens the lives of everyone, everywhere. 
As a result of the growing strength of our security forces, the Taliban and terrorist groups have resorted to cowardly and deadly attacks on civilian targets, causing record-high numbers of civilian casualties this year, with women and children comprising a third of them.
Targeting civilians and public institutions – including hospitals and clinics – and using individuals as human shields are violations of international law and go against all moral values. These acts need to be stopped immediately by the Taliban.
Among the persistent challenges that continue to threaten the peace and security of Afghanistan are terrorism and the presence of regional and transnational terrorist groups, including Taliban, ISIL and Al Qaeda affiliates. Recently, the government of Afghanistan carried an intense and successful operations in Nangarhar, to eliminate ISIL’s strongholds.
The past 18 years of conflict imposed by terrorist groups and the Taliban has not only resulted in the loss of innocent lives and instability in our country; it has also deeply impacted our joint efforts for achieving social and economic development goals.
The Afghan government has undertaken steps to implement and realize the Reform Agenda according to the commitments made in the Geneva Mutual Accountability Framework and the Afghanistan National Peace and Development Framework (ANPDF).  As we work towards fully implementing this agenda, we are making tremendous progress in our regional economic cooperation agenda. We have always supported and endorsed initiatives that help achieve connectivity and align with our national interests.
Mr. President,
Terrorism is the not the only threat that the people of Afghanistan face; the effects of climate change has led to severe humanitarian crisis and is a critical challenge. Afghanistan is a predominately agricultural economy and the prolonged drought has had destructive effects on the wellbeing of our society and has driven many families to leave their homes and provinces in search of better alternatives. This has led to a severe humanitarian situation that requires an immediate response. However, I do need to highlight the leadership role the United Nations has taken in coordinating with the international community to facilitate the necessary response as soon as possible.
The threats of illicit drug cultivation, production, and trafficking pose a security a challenge for Afghanistan. The Afghan people have been the first victims of this menace and continue to pay the highest price. There is a direct link between narcotics and sources of funding for the Taliban. In this regard, the government of Afghanistan has been a committed partner and ally in fighting to eradicate and dismantle this threat. However, it is not a single-country issue. We need a regionally comprehensive and collaborated effort and strategy to counter the narcotics trade and market. There must be an inclusive approach involving all regional and international stakeholders to combat the root causes of the problem, including the trafficking of precursors, financial safe havens and demand reduction.
Mr. President,
In conclusion, I would like to take this opportunity to thank you and your governments for your sustained support in assisting the Afghan people and the government in our efforts to restore peace and stability in Afghanistan. We should look into the future of Afghanistan from our perspective, more forward looking and optimistic.
For some, 18 years may seem like a long time to rebuild a country from ruin and complete destruction. But for me, I still remember the dark days of the Taliban. In absence of hope, where the regime locked all of us in complete isolation and contact from the outside world, today is the brightest and the most fortunate future that I had ever dreamed.
Due to your tremendous support, we have come a long way and we have made great progress.
Today, your support in this resolution is an important step in sending a strong message of solidarity to the Afghan people, and also to those that still aim to turn Afghanistan into a safe haven for terrorist groups. Your voices in here will matter to people in Afghanistan: that they are not alone in the fight against terrorism and in the quest for peace.  
Thank you.
Ansari

Friday November 29, 2019
Kabul (BNA) The top US general said yesterday that the chances of a successful outcome from peace talks on ending the 18-year war in Afghanistan were higher than before and could happen in the “near term”.
Earlier this month the Afghan Taliban released American and Australian university professors held hostage for more than three years, raising hopes for a revival of peace talks.
The chances of successful peace talks are complicated by the Taliban’s refusal to engage with what they call an “illegitimate” US-backed government in Kabul.
A messy political situation in Afghanistan and continued violence only make the situation more difficult.
Army General Mark Milley, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, arrived in Afghanistan yesterday, his first trip to the country since taking the top job in September.
“I think the chances of a positive outcome through negotiations is higher than I have seen, and I’ve been deeply involved in Afghanistan for 18 years,” Milley told reporters.
“With a bit of luck, we’ll have successful negotiations in the near term, not too distant future,” Milley said.
He added that work remained to actually see a positive outcome.
“A lot of time in situations like this, two steps forward one step back,” he said.
Over the past 18 years, senior American military leaders and diplomats have routinely talked about their optimism and how the war has turned a corner, but the Taliban continue to control large parts of the country.
Talks between the Taliban and the United States aimed at ending the war collapsed in September after President Donald Trump called off what he described as a planned meeting at the US Camp David presidential retreat.
Before the talks were broken off, both sides had said they were close to a deal.
Two Taliban leaders told Reuters that the group had again been holding meetings with senior US officials in Doha since this weekend, saying they could soon resume the peace process.
“Our leaders started unofficial meetings with senior US officials in Doha and working on a plan how to resume the peace process,” one of the Taliban leaders said.
Milley said negotiations were “ongoing.”
Last month the US military said that it had quietly reduced the number of troops by about 2,000, to bring the total number of US troops in Afghanistan to between 12,000 and 13,000.
The Pentagon has said it can go down to 8,600 troops and still carry out a counter-terrorism mission.
Milley said no decisions had been made on troop reductions and there were several options, including going down to 8,600.
Malaymail
Ansari

Thursday, 28 November 2019 11:29

Water Dam Constructed in Herat

Thursday November 28, 2019
Kabul (BNA) Construction work of a water dam has been completed in western Herat province.
Farid Azhand spokesperson for ministry of rural rehabilitation and development told BNA reporter, the water dam has been built by national citizens’ covenant program in Pashtun Zarghoon district of the province that provides water for 1500 acres of agricultural lands.
The water dam has been constructed with a cost of 1,500,000 Afghanis and also provides drinking water to 240 families.
M.A.Ansari

 

Thursday, November 28, 2019
Kandahar (BNA)  Seven Taliban rebels were killed in commando forces operation in Kandahar province.
The rebels were suppressed on their strongholds in Maiwand District while terrorist activities last night.
Atal army corps in south of the country with releasing a statement confirmed the killing of seven Taliban in the raid.
The commando forces during the operation have managed to destroy five strongholds of the insurgents in Maiwand district.
The commando forces with discovering of 13 mines also prevented from a series of deadly explosion.
Likewise, a weapons cache of Taliban was discovered in Kandahar province.
The cache was kept in a hideout of Taliban in Khakrez district.
Several heavy and light weapons were seized from the cache, said police officials.
T. Yarzada

 

Thursday, 28 November 2019 11:30

Mine Blast Took The Lives of 15 Civilians

Thursday, November 28, 2019
Kunduz (BNA)  Fifteen civilians were martyred in explosion of a mine in Kunduz province yesterday evening.
Esmatullah Moradi spokesman for Kunduz governor told BNA, 15 civilians including women, and children were lost their lives in explosion of a mine planted by insurgents in Hazrat Imam Sahib District of that province.
Two other children were also injured in the explosion.
The victims of the event were mostly women and children attending a wedding in the car.
Sedidq Sediqi spokesman of the president in his twitter last night confirmed the incident, and blamed Taliban for the planting mine.
T. Yarzada

Thursday, 28 November 2019 11:29

Deserved Families Received Aids

Thursday, November 28, 2019
Kabul (BNA) Eighty-seven deserved families received aids in Nangarhar province yesterday.
Feraidon Azhand spokesman of rural rehabilitation and development ministry told BNA, the assistance include, wheat, fuel wood, and winter cloths have been distributed through national citizenship program of that ministry for residents of Khamina, Haji Saheban and Maskanabad regions, Khogyani District, Nangarhar province.
T. Yarzada

Thursday, November 28, 2019
Kabul (BNA) President Mohammad Ashraf Ghani has considered reports about recent sexual abuse in Logal as concerning.
The country’s President said he had instructed the intelligence agency to stop the proceedings in this regard, adding: “The protection of civil society and human rights defenders is the sole responsibility of the security forces.
President Ghani added that such cases should be investigated and reviewed by Attorney General Office (AGO) and Afghanistan Independent Human Rights Commission (AIHRC).
President Ghani also ordered an investigation into an alleged pedophile ring operating in the country’s schools, and criticized Afghanistan’s main intelligence agency for detaining two activists who helped expose the scandal.
The country’s President further said: “He was deeply disturbed about the recent reports on sexual abuse”, and that he instructed the Education Ministry to provide him a “thorough report” on the matter as soon as possible.

President of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan stressed that he would further review the issue of maintaining security of defenders of human rights by holding the rule of law meeting on Thursday.
Yarzada
 

Thursday, 28 November 2019 06:17

President Ghani Pays Visit to Parwan

Thursday, November 28, 2019
Kabul (BNA) President Mohammad Ashraf Ghani, leading a high-ranking government delegation, paid a visit to Parwan to review reconstruction process of Jabul Seraj Palace.
Visiting various sections of the palace, the country’s President in a meeting with elders and dignitaries of Parwan said the Jabul Seraj Palace would be changed to museum of Jihad and Resistance of the people of Afghanistan.
Yarzada

Thursday, November 28, 2019
Kabul (BNA) National Security Advisor, Dr. Hamdullah Mohib and the Saudi Arabia Ambassador, Jasim Mohammad Alkhalidi discussed bilateral cooperation and continued friendly relation between the two countries, a statement from his office said Wednesday.
Both sides spoke on the continuation of cooperation between Afghanistan and Saudi Arabia as well as issues relating to terrorists groups, with the country’s national security advisor saying the government of Afghanistan has gained eye-catching achievements in war on Taliban and Daesh militants this year, the statement said.
The Saudi Ambassador called terrorism the enemy of the whole people in the world and said the phenomenon should be fought jointly, the statement quoted.
He said his country was ready for cooperation in fighting all terrorist groups in Afghanistan, the statement quoted.
Yarzada

Thursday, November 28, 2019
Kabul (BNA) President Mohammad Ashraf Ghani in a farewell meeting with NATO RS deputy commander to Afghanistan Gen. Rainey conferred Mir Masjidi Khan state medal on him at Presidential Palace on Tuesday.
The medal awarded to recognize his enduring partnership with the Afghan National Defense and Security Forces for the stability and security of Afghanistan.
In the meeting, President Ghani praised Gen. Rainey for his efforts and services towards counter terrorism, maintaining peace and stability and strengthening the Afghan forces.
The outgoing NATO RS deputy commander to Afghanistan Gen. Rainey said that it was needed he would come back to serve in Afghanistan.
Yarzada

 

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