12 November 2019

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Friday November 01, 2019
Kabul (BNA) For more than 50 years now, a mystic poet has kept a quiet window desk at the Kabul Public Library. His seat overlooks the hustle and bustle of the Afghan capital city, all but unrecognizable from the day he arrived as a young library clerk — one with a dreamy mind and stammering speech but fine calligraphic handwriting that helped land him his day job.
As governments toppled around him, Afghanistan sank deeper into flames of war that still burn. But Haidari Wujodi, 80, maintained his daily routine, switching his shoes for comfortable sandals that he wears with socks as he arrives at his desk behind stacks of fraying periodicals. His flask of tea fills and empties.
Until his official retirement a few years ago, Wujodi was in charge of the periodicals section. But his life is so intertwined with the third floor corner of the library that the Afghan government continues to pay him a small stipend, and Wujodi continues to show up every day, often the last to leave as the sound of evening prayer echoes in the dusk.
He no longer shelves magazines and newspapers; his assistants take care of that. Over the years, his desk has become an address for all kinds of visitors — musicians who need lyrics for a new composition, young poets who bring their latest publication for encouragement and feedback, university students who need references for a paper or a dissertation, and street vendors who just want some wise words to get them through troubled times.
The 80-year-old — tall, with broad shoulders and a long white beard — receives all of them the same, minister or beggar. He insists on walking each visitor to the door when they leave, despite their insistence that the ustad — “master” in Persian, as he is often called — not embarrass them by paying them such an honor.
“There’s a saying of the prophet,” Wujodi told a young poet one recent morning as he was leaving, having dropped off several collections of his recently published work. “If your friends are visiting you, try to go out seven steps to receive them. And when they are leaving, go out with them at least seven steps.”
Mondays and Wednesdays have been special in Wujodi’s routine. Twice a week for 30 years now, he has hosted a two-hour reading of the works of the Mawlana Jalaluddin Balkhi — the 13th-century Persian poet, philosopher and Sufi mystic known in the West as Rumi. The lessons typically end up being less about poetry and more about spirituality and philosophy. He calls Rumi’s body of work “a factory of human making.”
About 15 men and women, members of a group called “The Society of Lovers of Mawlana,” arrive and quietly take their seats. Wujodi looks out of the window as the room fills with the warm afternoon sun and a peaceful silence. One of the members, a middle-aged man with a narrow beard and a beautiful melodic voice, sings several verses as the rest follow along in their copies of the book. Then, in a soft but shaky voice, his head trembling, Wujodi begins explaining the verses.
On a recent Monday, lesson 405, on page 333 of one of Mawlana’s collections, focused on a conversation between a mystic and an interlocutor, with the mystic trying to explain to the man that the beauties in the outside world are simply reflections of what is inside.
The fruits and the gardens are inside the heart
What’s in this mud and water is the reflection of their grace.
Wujodi, spending an hour on these two lines, spoke of the heart as the physical “plasma on the left side of the chest,” and of the divine and spiritual capacity that he said could not be exactly defined. The way of reaching the divine is by focusing inward, he said.
“The heart is like a mirror,” Wujodi said. “If it is cleansed of the dust and fog, whichever way or object you aim it at the reflection of it would be reflected in the mirror.”
Haidari Wujodi was born in 1939, in a small village in Panjshir province in northern Afghanistan, one of five children of a cleric. In those days the Islam practiced in Afghanistan was deeply tied into Sufi traditions of poetry. His father kept about 200 books at home, many of poetry and handwritten. It was there that the young Haidari learned to read.
Wujodi has only a sixth-grade formal education. When he was completing his fifth-grade exams, he had a dream one night that he says sent him “tumbling between sanity and insanity.” Wujodi says he is unable to describe the state, but for several years he could not regain his balance. When he did, he was transformed.
At 15, Wujodi moved to Kabul and found his way to the bookbinding shop of one of the most renowned mystic poets of the time, Sufi Ashqari. While he was just a teenager and Ashqari in his 60s, their relationship shaped his life. The teenager was admitted to the small group of poets who gathered at Ashqari’s shop in old Kabul, exchanging verses as Ashqari continued to bind books.
Years later, when Ashqari was 90 and on his deathbed, he entrusted his unfinished work — the last chapters barely legible, because his hand had started trembling — to Wujodi, who spent eight months working after hours at the public library to prepare it for publication.
As his own poetry drew attention, Wujodi made sure he stuck to his quiet corner at the library — a dream job that allowed him space for his poetic endeavors and an income to support his wife, a son who is now an artist and two daughters who are both teachers.
He repeatedly rejected offers of higher positions. In the early 1990s, when the Islamic government that followed the Soviet withdrawal insisted that Haidari lead an educational foundation, he agreed to a compromise: He would continue his day job at the library, and for one hour at the end of every day he would go to the foundation’s office.
Wujodi still does not own his own home, living in a house owned by his wife’s family. One time, in the waning days of the monarchy, he refused even to meet with a member of the royal family who wanted to set him up with his own place.
“I apologized,” Wujodi recalled. “I said ‘I know, my decision is beyond logic.’”
Every morning on his way to work, Wujodi would circle the park at the heart of the city. At 80 he is still fit — “these mystics eat very little,” one member of the society said — climbing the three stories to his desk without holding the railing. But in recent years, age has cut his walk in the park in half.

Most days, Wujodi’s desk feels like an oasis at the center of chaos. One Monday last November, a suicide bomber killed a traffic cop at the roundabout just outside. From a library window, the scene was framed in a picture that went viral. The officer’s body, separated from his white cap, was sprawled under a billboard that read: “The nation that doesn’t read books will have to experience the whole of history.”
The shrapnel from the explosion flew through Wujodi’s window, where he had just finished his afternoon prayer. Had he still been standing, he might have been killed.
“What is happening in our world — is this really humane?” Wujodi asked during a recent lesson, lamenting how far the world stands from the humanist teachings of mystics like Rumi. “We don’t need philosophy for this — even a kid knows that we haven’t reached that common sense worthy of humanity.”
“The world is still blacked out on the wine of the grape — all this human killing, all this destruction, this ruin,” he added. “What is worthy of the dignity of a human, we haven’t reached that yet.”
Artdaily
Ansari
 

Friday November 01, 2019
Kabul (BNA) The Taliban should call a one-month ceasefire to prove they still control their forces, Afghanistan's national security advisor said on Tuesday.
"If the Taliban really want peace, they should prove how much control they have over their commanders and how much they really obey their commands," Hamdullah Mohib of Afghanistan said at a press conference in Kabul, capital of Afghanistan.
"Our suggestion is for a one-month ceasefire, followed by negotiations," he added.
Mohib, Afghanistan's former ambassador to the U.S., said any future negotiations should include his government, as well as Pakistan, which has long been accused of backing the Taliban.
"Pakistan should provide a guarantee that they will not support the Taliban or other groups like them and not give them safe havens," he said.
Zalmay Khalilzad, the U.S. special envoy leading talks for Washington, has since spoken informally with Taliban officials in Pakistan, raising the possibility Washington seeks to resume dialogue.
Khalilzad was in Kabul on Sunday and visited Islamabad again Monday, though it was unclear if he spoke to Taliban officials on that visit.
Cgtn
Ansari

 

Thursday, 31 October 2019 07:30

Explosion Prevented Close to a Hospital

Thursday October 31, 2019
HERAT CITY (BNA) Afghan national police personnel by discovering and confiscating a mine succeeded to prevent an explosion close to a hospital in western Herat province.
The mine planted by enemies of the country near a hospital in Shindand district of the province.
Jailani Farhad spokesman of Herat governor told BNA, a mine placed close to a hospital in Shindand district that discovered and defused by Afghan security forces with cooperation of local people.
No individual or group has commented regarding the foiled mine planting so far, but local officials in Herat claimed that the mine planted by Taliban fighters.
M.A.Ansari

 

 

Thursday, October 31, 2019
Jalalabad (BNA) Five armed Taliban terrorists were killed in NATO drone raid in Nangarhar province late yesterday.
The terrorists were targeted by NATO drone raid in Momand Dara District.
Ataullah Khogyani spokesman for Nangarhar governor told BNA, five Taliban associates were killed in the raid.
A hideout of the terrorist with all war equipment have been demolished, he added.
Another report says, police of Nangarhar province discovered and defused ten mines from main roads of the province and prevented from series deadly events on civilians.
Security officials of the province blamed Taliban for the failed mine planting.
T. Yarzada

Thursday, 31 October 2019 07:31

Commentary

Thursday, October 31, 2019
Kabul (BNA) The national security advisor of president made public the peace draft of the government, the draft that has 7 articles and three sections.
BNA political affairs analyst commenting on the issue writes: the national security advisor of the president, has recently made public the peace draft of Islamic Republic of Afghanistan, enforcing ceasefire, establishing a national and regional gathering for peace in Afghanistan  for reaching peace in Afghanistan are a pre – condition of it.
According Hamdullah Muheeb the security advisor of the president the peace draft of Afghan government has six articles and three basic sections.
A section of the draft consists of negotiation with America, Taliban and Pakistan. The second section constitutes a gathering with regional countries and Afghan international partners and the third section related to good governing and assessment of factors caused fighting in the country. In peace draft of government one month ceasefire and going to negotiation table are pre conditions.
The draft is presented in a time, where political developments regarding to Afghanistan have become hotter and political provocations getting new momentums.
Some days later a number of politicians and political activists of the country and Taliban representatives will come together in Beijing the capital of China. Prior to that the representatives of four countries America, China, Russia and Pakistan the main players in Afghan case will deliberate in Moscow on Afghan problem. In NATO defense ministers meeting late last week held in Brussels, Afghan problem  was the main issue of discussions and Zalmay Khalilzad the special envoy of US foreign ministry for Afghanistan once again started his trip to the region to start the delayed process of peace on Afghanistan and considering the developments present his peace draft  on Afghan issue.
Three objectives mentioned in the draft that includes Afghan state negotiation with America, Taliban and performing a national and regional gathering, good governing and assessing the factors of war in the country.
The time the Afghanistan raise the issue of negotiations with America, gives the message that America should think about Afghanistan with high responsibility and make a decision. How America came to Afghanistan and how to withdraw from that country. What has been happening in Afghanistan is the result out siders’ policies and one cannot blame Afghans for it.
In discussions with Pakistan the issues is clear, that country is the supporter of Taliban and provoke war in Afghanistan, should desists supporting Taliban and avoid interference in Afghanistan and prove to be a good neighbor .
Islamic Republic of Afghanistan in her peace draft has raised the holding of national and international gathering. If we precisely look at the deep of Afghan problem, it is the result of foreign countries competition who is keeping the flame of conflict burning. It is an open fact and everybody knows about it.
The Afghan government is trying conducting a transparent and effecting gathering cut of the hands of foreigners and have the countries to end their proxy war in Afghanistan and this is only possible via condemning the countries caused violence in Afghanistan and stop terrorism this evil phenomenon forever and recue not only Afghans but the region and international community as a whole.

Thursday, 31 October 2019 07:30

Regions Clean Up From Insurgents in Nangarhar

Thursday, October 31, 2019
Jalalabad (BNA)  Dozens of regions clean up from insurgents in a cellaring operation  in Nngarhar province.
The operation was launched since four days with attendance of hundreds militaries, police forces and support of air forces and still continues there.
Selab army corps in east of the country with releasing a statement said, so far, dozens of regions in Sherzad District were cleared from insurgents affiliated to Taliban and ISIS fighters, and the security troops discovered and confiscated several mines from  busy roads of the province.
In latest conflict, four insurgents were killed and six others have been wounded.
Residents of Shirzad District are happy with evacuation of insurgents from their areas.
T. Yarzada

 

Thursday, October 31, 2019
Farah (BNA) Taliban attack on police checkpoint in Farah province repulsed by security forces yesterday.
Police official of Farah told BNA, Taliban stormed on a police checkpoint in Qala-e-Zaman region, which was faced with sever resistance of police forces, after killing of one and injuring another, they fled the site.
Numerous of heavy and light weapons were seized in the clash.
No harm and casualties sustained to police forces in the clash.
T. Yarzada

 

Thursday October 31, 2019
Kabul (BNA) Former UN High Commissioner for Refugees Sadako Ogata, who led UNHCR from 1991 to 2000, passed away in Tokyo, Japan her family has announced, the UNHCR citing her family said in its website the other day. “Mrs. Ogata was a visionary leader who steered UNHCR through one of the most momentous decades in its history, transforming the lives of millions of refugees and others devastated by war, ethnic cleansing and genocide and helping redefine humanitarian action in a fast evolving geopolitical landscape,” said High Commissioner Filippo Grandi. “She was a committed internationalist and a friend to the United Nations throughout her life.”
President of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan, Mohammad Ashraf Ghani, in a statement issued from the Presidential Palace extended his deepest condolence to the government and people of Japan and the UN officials. “During her mission as the UN High Commissioner for Refugees, Mrs. Ogata did much for the Afghan and world refugees as she did valuable services for the people of her country. Her achievements would remain forever,” said the President in the statement.
On behalf of the government and people of Afghanistan, I want to appreciate the services of Mrs. Ogata during her tenure as the Japanese International Cooperation Agency (JICA) General Director as well as Advisor to the Japanese Foreign Ministry. According to the another report, President of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan Mohammad Ashraf Ghani has extended hid condolence to the death of Eng. Sayed Nasim Alavi, the country’s former CIT minister, a statement from the presidential palace reported. “I extend my condolence to the late Egn. Alavi’s family and friends and great patience to his bereaved family. May his soul rest in paradise,” said the statement quoting the country’s President.
Ansari


 

Thursday October 31, 2019
Kabul (BNA) President Mohammad Ashraf Ghani in a message has condoled the demise of one of the country’s top and compatriot generals Maj. Gen. Mahboob Amiri, who has passed away due to an illness he was suffering. “The deceased Gen. Amiri spent most years of his life in the service of the country and people at the ministry of interior. His death is a big loss for Afghanistan,” the message said. In his message, the country’s President offered his condolence and sympathy to the deceased family, colleagues, personnel of the ministry of interior and people of Badakhshan, wishing him paradise and patience to his family. According to another report, Chief Executive Dr. Abdullah Abdullah in a separate message has also condoled death of Maj. Gen. Mahboob Amiri. “Maj. Gen. Amiri, former chief of fire brigade of the MoI, was one of the country’s brave, experienced and hardworking officers. His death is a big loss for Afghanistan in particular the country’s police forces,” the message added. In his message, Dr. Abdullah wished paradise to the deceased and patience to the deceased family and colleagues.
Ansari


 

Thursday, October 31, 2019
Kandahar (BNA)  Kandahar governor Hayatullah Hayat and a delegation from the Directorate General of Postal Services officially inaugurated passport delivering services through the postal service office in Kandahar by cutting a ribbon here on Tuesday, Kandahar governor media office said.
The governor said that all the paper works would be done in the passport office but the customers would get their passports in the post office between 8:30 to 3:30 P.M, the statement from the governor office added.
Kandahar governor instructed the staff there to provide special telephone hotlines so people can get information about their passport status.
Kandahar governor also handed over a customer’s passport and officially started the process, the statement added.
Yarzada

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