21 April 2019

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Thursday March 21, 2019

Kabul (BNA) communities in large swathes of Afghanistan are facing yet another emergency: widespread flooding that will leave some rebuilding their lives for years.
Sudden heavy rainfall this month triggered flash floods that swept away thousands of homes and killed dozens in nine Afghan provinces.
More than 112,000 people are affected, with numbers rising as humanitarian assessments trickle in from insecure areas, according to tallies by UN agencies and the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies.
Afghanistan is seeing unusually heavy rainfall due to the El Niño weather phenomenon declared in February, which can bring extreme weather across the globe. Forecasts predict there could be warmer temperatures and 40 to 50 percent more rain than usual into May, according to the Red Cross. Months of severe drought also make it harder for soil to absorb excess water, raising the risk of sudden floods. In hard-hit Nawa-i-Barakzai district in the southern province of Helmand, communities were still waiting for help – and fearing a fresh onslaught of rain – amid destroyed mud homes and dead livestock.
In one flattened village, Ali Mohammed, 42, stood on his collapsed roof, the smell of rotting flesh seeping through the mud that used to form the walls of his house.
“It’s my sheep,” he said, pointing to a crack that exposed parts of the dead animals, killed in the floods.
The rains started at night. Mohammed said he and his neighbors rushed to wake their families as the waters from a nearby river rapidly rose and heavy downpours started to tear apart rooftops.
They scrambled to higher ground. But when the waters receded hours later the entire village had been washed away – along with a lifetime of hard work and savings.
The rains came and went quickly, but the aftermath is likely to last years for farmers like Mohammed. He said his personal losses, including dozens of sheep and his entire food supply, totaled a steep 900,000 Afghani, or $12,000. His wife packed a few remaining belongings and took the family’s children to the relative safety of the provincial capital, Lashkargah.
“We didn’t think it could be this bad,” he said.
Afghanistan’s neighbors, Iran and Pakistan, have also been hit by floods. In Pakistan’s Balochistan Province, which shares a border with Helmand, aid agencies are warning of disease outbreaks due to damaged health clinics, low vaccination rates, and health conditions already worsened by drought.
Here in Helmand, traditionally a Taliban heartland, the latest disaster is exacerbated by widespread poverty and active conflict. Government-controlled Nawa-i-Barakzai borders one of the war’s front lines, and the district has seen a rise in clashes and killings in recent weeks.
The district governor, Ayub Omar Omari, believes the floods are evidence of a changing climate.
“We’ve had a bad drought, followed by the worst floods I’ve seen here in decades,” he said. “People’s entire livelihoods have been swept away.”
Few structures are left standing in areas far from the bigger markets and paved roads, where fragile mud homes are prevalent. Most families have fled, finding refuge with relatives in nearby towns. Those who stayed behind continue to sort through debris, hoping to recover what remains of their belongings.
“It’s not safe for my family to stay outside, but we have little option,” said Haji Badar, 75. He stood surrounded by his daughters on a muddy plateau – his house has literally melted away.
“We’re hoping for help, but none has come yet,” he said, two weeks after the initial rains.
The sky is blue for now, but Badar fears what will come: “Our wettest season has just started.”
Thenewhumanitarian
 

Thursday March 21, 2019

Kabul (BNA) While being optimist upon advent of new solar year of 1398, a number of youth expressed their points of view as following:
Talking on new year preparations and opportunities, Sayed Mahboob Hashimi one of the youth said, we wish the new year be a year of nationwide security, reliable peace and reconciliation so to be enable to continue our higher educations in peace of mind and a secure atmosphere and serve future generations and prove to the world that Afghan youth enjoy full power and capability. Manan Ashkrez another youth said, “as a youth I hope the new year to be a good, peaceful year for all Afghan people. We hope it would be a year free from war, suicide attacks and explosions. All people are thirsty of peace and particularly the youth are fed up with war. We youth wish to complete our educations and request the government to provide employment opportunities to us.”
He added, we no longer want war and destruction in our beloved homeland, Afghanistan. We want to join hands and rebuild our ruined country and don’t let enemies to invade and change our wounded country to battlefields of their proxy wars, make our brave nation vagabond.
He continued, we should learn from nature. When the New Year advents and spring appears, the migrant birds return to their original nests and resume a new life.
Freshta Ahmadi a female youth expressing her opinion on the New Year and new spring, said, we consider the New Year as a glad tiding to a bright future of the new generation. Our people are optimist on return of a reliable peace. If reliable peace avails no youth would be concerned and they would be able to continue their higher educations. Last year peace efforts were increased and 1398 solar year is expected to be a year of restoration of a reliable peace in Afghanistan. Talking on the New Year, Ms. Zarmina Haqjo Kakar said, we wish the New Year would be a happy and prosperous year for our people and start it with new power and energy and hope it would heal wounds of our nation and give us glad tiding of a reliable peace. Speaking on the new year and Nowruz festivities, Sadya Sayeed student of a private university said, Nowruz celebration is a historical, national and traditional occasion since long times in Afghanistan, Iran, Turkey and the central Asian countries. Our people celebrate it every year. We hope the New Year would be a peaceful year and our people would witness an everlasting ceasefire.
Masouda Qarizada
 

Wednesday March 20, 2019

TALIQAN CITY (BNA) With a cost of 254 million Afghanis, 14 irrigation and water supply projects have been completed and put into exploitation in northern Takhar province.
According to BNA local correspondent report, the projects has been built in Baharak, Kalfagan, Warsaj, Bangi districts and Taliqan city the provincial capital of the province.
By implementing of the projects hundreds local residents found access to drinking water and 63,000 acres of land will be irrigated.
M.A.Ansari
 

Tuesday, March 19, 2019

Pul-e-Khomri (BNA) The construction work of irrigational network kick off in Nahreen district, Baghlan province.
Syeed Noor Agha Sadat head of agriculture, irrigation and livestock Dept. of Baghlan province told BNA, the network will be rehabilitated to a length of six and a half kilo meter at a cost of more than 30 million Afghanis from agriculture and irrigation ministry within a year.
After competition of the network, more than 4500 acres of agricultural land will be covered by irrigation and the shortage water of 5,000 families will also be resolved.
The source added that peasants face a shortage of agricultural water and their agricultural crops have been reduced, with the completion of the project their problems will solve.
It is mentionable that, in the course of this year, 5 irrigation projects have been implemented by the ministry of Agriculture and Irrigation in Baghlan province.
T. Yarzada
 

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