RSS Feed Mon, 27 Jun 2016 20:12:13 GMT FeedCreator 1.8.0-dev ( TOLOnews 6pm News 27 June 2016 shuja-27-june-16Top news in this Bulletin:

The First Vice-President Abdul Rashid Dostum has accused the National Unity Government (NUG) leaders of excluding him from power and side-lining his supporters.

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The Administrative Board of the House of Representatives on Monday raised concerns over illegal compromises and dealings between a number of members of parliament and Ministers.

Mon, 27 Jun 2016 16:31:02 GMT
Hekmatyar Stops Peace Talks with NUG

Gulbuddin Hekmatyar, the leader of Hizb-e-Islami, on Monday withdrew from peace talks with the National Unity Government (NUG).

Hekmatyar said the peace agreement with the Afghan government, which was about to be finalized, has been terminated.

In a message published in a Shadat publication linked to Hizb-e-Islami, Hekmatyar demanded the termination of the national unity government.

Hekmatyar claimed that the national unity government was not acceptable to majority of the Afghanistan people.

Therefor the efforts towards peace with Kabul has been terminated.

Mon, 27 Jun 2016 16:15:14 GMT
Dostum Accuses Government of Excluding Him From Power dustom-27-june-16

The First Vice-President Abdul Rashid Dostum has accused the National Unity Government (NUG) leaders of excluding him from power and side-lining his supporters.

Talking to journalists during a military operation in Dawlat Abad district in Faryab on Monday, Dostum said President Ashraf Ghani and the Chief Executive Abdullah Abdullah have shared the power among themselves. His role in the administration is now unclear.

Dostum said considering his efforts in bringing President Ghani to power, at least 10 embassies should be allocated to his supporters.

He claimed that when the NUG was formed, he was against the division of power between government leaders. He added there also a lack of coordination between the Afghan National Defense and the Security Forces (ANDSF).

"In the beginning, I was against the sharing of power on a 50-50 basis. Why then is there is a lack of coordination between the Defense and Interior ministries? As the first vice-president, I say this is our fault...," he said.

Dostum added: "They [government leaders] are sharing black money while captives, displaced people and others need help. With whom should these people share their problems?"

He warned the state over these issues, adding that "they [government leaders] should seriously consider the matter as we all love our country and our people."

He said government's control has been confined only to main roads. "Only the asphalted roads have remained for us, but even those areas we are not fully safe," he added.

The President's deputy spokesman Shahussain Murtazawi denied Dostum was being side-lined.

"The first vice-president Mr. Dostum is in senior management in government, according to the constitution. He exercises his legal authority and he is now fighting on the front lines for the country's sovereignty. The first vice-president attends the National Security Council meeting, the high economic council meeting and other important national decision making events," said Murtazawi.

A number of analysts said Dostum's accusations need to be discussed.

"This government has been established based on the influence of tribal figures. At first it was divided on a 50-50 basis between Abdullah and Ghani. However, there are other figures in every 50 percent part of the government," said university lecturer Tahir Hashemi.

"Mr. Dostum is the first vice-president. His areas of authority and his responsibilities are clear. There is no need for him to go to the frontline. He should manage the three pillars of government," said military affairs analyst Atiqullah Amarkhail.

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Mon, 27 Jun 2016 16:10:24 GMT
Concerns Over MPs Unlawful Dealings with Ministers

The Administrative Board of the House of Representatives on Monday raised concerns over illegal compromises and dealings between a number of members of parliament and Ministers.

Board members said that unlawful dealings between MPs and ministers do not serve the people. The practice rather causes between the people and parliament.

"It is a bitter fact that we, as administrative board, are getting tired of this issue. Dealings are taking place based on petition sheets. It is bitter for the house and leads to enmity between itself and the nation of Afghanistan," said Speaker of the Wolesi Jirga (Lower House of Parliament), Abdul Rauf Ibrahimi.

Meanwhile a number of other MPs have said that some of their colleagues are involved in such unlawful dealings.

"Petition forms sometimes have thirty to fifty collected signatures. Those forms just disappear," said Nazir Ahmad Hanafi, a parliament member.

"Those who have relationships with MPs ask them to appointing their relatives as police chiefs, district governors and commanders. Even the issuing of licenses for Taxis are now compromised, but we investigate none of them. I am not saying all the MPs are corrupt, but only a minority of MPs are honest in their work and duties," said Ramaza Bashardost anther MP.

In order to prevent MPs from unlawfully dealing with the Ministers, it has been suggested that the process of petitioning must be cleared within three days.

"I will assign the legislative commission to prepare the plan. That plan will then be approved by commission in order to solve the problem," Ibrahimi added.

In the past MPs were also criticized over dealings and compromises. A number of MPs even warned that they will disclose names of those corrupt colleagues, but those names have as yet been not disclosed.

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Mon, 27 Jun 2016 16:07:49 GMT
Long Queues at Passport Department after Torkham Closure passport-line-27-june-16

The number of applicants at the Kabul Passport Department has increased sharply following Pakistan's decision to close the Torkham crossing for travelers without passports and visas.

The head the Passport Department, Sayed Omar Saboor, said that more than 1,500 people were applying for passports daily.

"Those wanting to go to Pakistan, either for treatment or other purposes, must have valid passports, otherwise they cannot travel to that country. This is a legal requirement and it is good for both countries," he stated.

Previously ordinary Afghans were free to travel to Pakistan without passports, particularly when they wanted to go to that country for medical treatment.

"Now we are not allowed to cross the Durand Line without a passport. If the Pakistani border force does allow us to cross, they demand money from the travelers," said Ezatullah, a resident of Nangarhar.

"Our homes are in Pakistan. Our residential card in Pakistan has recently expired, now we are not allowed to travel to Pakistan without a passport," said Parwan resident Mohammad Omran.

A number of patients who want to go to Pakistan for treatment, said they are faced with the same problem.

"I tried frequently to get medical care in Kabul, but doctors told me to go abroad for treatment. Now I have to have a passport to travel to Pakistan for treatment of my eye," said Ahmad Samir, a resident of Kabul.

This follows increased rifts between Kabul and Islamabad after Pakistani border force tried to erect a number of installations near the Torkham Gate on the Durand Line, connecting the two countries.

According to officials, the issue of Torkham is still under discussion between Afghan and Pakistani negotiators.

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Mon, 27 Jun 2016 16:04:07 GMT
MoFA Concerned Over Afghans In Syrian War sirya-afghan-refugees-27-june-16

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MoFA) has expressed its serious concern over reports that thousands of Afgan refugees are fighting in Syria after having been lured there by foreign government organizations.

"The Afghan government is addressing the matter through diplomatic channels and has informed the UN High Commission for Refugees accordingly. We are working closely with the Commission in this regard," said MoFA spokesman Shekib Mustaghni said.

The MoFA is treating the issue with caution, particularly claims of Iran's alleged involvement. The ministry has warned the misuse of Afghan refugees was against human rights laws.

"The mixture of migration, poverty, addiction to drugs, violence, an unresponsive government and weak interventions of the MoFA and have led to chaos," said political analyst Jawed Kohistani.

Iranian media have reported that tens of thousands of Afghan citizens are fighting against Bashar Assad opponents in Syria.

According to a report published in Tehran's Marz-e-Oboor Weekly, the number of the Afghan citizens fighting in Syria ranges between 12,000 and 14,000.

The report quotes Mohammad Mohsen Hussaini, a commander of Afghan fighters in Syria who was killed in a recent clash in that country, and says that every one of the fighters receive $50 USD daily and their families $400 USD per month.

The families of the refugees involved in the fighting are also provided with housing and other facilities, the report stated.

A mother of an Afghan citizen whose son was sent from Iran to Syria and then killed in a fight against Assad's opponents, said: "My dear Mahdi Jan did not go to a bad place. He was martyred. A martyr is always alive."

Unconfirmed reports state that if Iranian, Iraqi or Lebanese fighters are arrested in Syria war they were swapped by the warring sides. This however did not apply to Afghan fighters if they are apprehended.

To watch the report, click here:


Mon, 27 Jun 2016 15:59:54 GMT
Government Urged To Gain International Trust Ahead Of Warsaw Summit

As Afghanistan prepares to attend the Warsaw Summit in July, a number of critics and MPs called on government to gain the international community's trust ahead of the conference.

"The Afghan government should make better use of such summits. Transparent and efficient management of money donated by the international community is crucial to gaining world-wide trust. It is also essential for continuation of financial aid to the country," said Kabul University lecturer Nasrullah Stanikzai.

MP Seddiq Ahmad Osmani said the monetary aid from donor countries should be managed well by the state. "Afghanistan will not return with gains from such conferences as long as it does not fulfill its commitments," he added.

Chief Executive Abdullah Abdullah told a Council of Ministers meeting on Monday he expected international community to announce a new tranche of support to Afghanistan. The Afghan government will, in turn, reaffirm its commitments to the world in Warsaw.

"We are preparing for Warsaw Summit. This conference will also ensure continued support by NATO member states for the Afghan National Defense and Security Forces (ANDSF)," he said.

He gave the assurance that the Afghan government remained committed to strengthening and enhancing its reform efforts.

Abdullah added: "We have good commitments of future support from our partners. This is a good sign as we progress towards peace and stability in the country."

The Warsaw Summit will focus on three main objectives:

• Continued funding the ANDSF.

• There would be about 10,000 U.S. troops in the country and NATO is expected to contribute another 6,000.

• NATO and Afghanistan will issue a joint statement, reiterating the organization's commitment to the country without giving any deadlines.

Mon, 27 Jun 2016 12:53:35 GMT
Former HPC Chief Shot Dead In Uruzgan

Former head of High Peace Council (HPC) office in Uruzgan was shot dead by a number of unknown gunmen in Trinkot, the capital city of the province, a security source told TOLOnews on Monday.

Dr. Abdul Baqi was in a shop in the city when he was targeted by the gunmen, the source said.

According to the source, the gunmen fled the area after shooting at the former HPC chief.

No group including Taliban has so far claimed responsibility for the attack.

Mon, 27 Jun 2016 10:07:27 GMT
Five Taliban Killed By Own Explosives In Paktia

Nearly five Taliban insurgents were killed when a bomb they were making exploded, local officials said on Monday.

The incident took place in Sayed Karam district in Paktia province on Sunday night, the provincial police chief Qadir Zadran said.

He added that nine rebels were wounded in the blast.

The Interior Ministry confirmed the incident in a statement.

Mon, 27 Jun 2016 09:11:42 GMT
Govt Committed to Bringing Electoral Reforms: Abdullah

Chief Executive Abdullah Abdullah on Monday said the National Unity Government is committed to bringing reforms into the country's electoral bodies in order to ensure transparent and free elections in the future.

Addressing the Council of Ministers meeting, Abdullah said discussions were underway on the implementation of the reforms.

Commenting on the Warsaw Summit, which would be held in July, Abdullah said the international community will announce its support to Afghanistan and that the Afghan government will also have some commitments to the world at the conference.

"We are preparing for Warsaw Summit. This conference will ensure the support of NATO member states for the Afghan National Defense and Security Forces (ANDSF)," he said.

He mentioned that the Afghan government is committed to strengthen and enhance its efforts for reforms as Kabul is preparing for the Warsaw Summit.

Abdullah added: "We have good commitments for future support from our partners and it is a good sign on our way forward to peace and stability in the country."

He stated that the U.S troops' support to Afghan security forces on the battlefields is very important to the country.

"Additional operational authorities for U.S. forces in Afghanistan were a step forward. It improves effectiveness of fight against terrorists," he said.

On the Torkham issue, he said there were incidents in Torkham and that Kabul had discussed it through diplomatic channels with Islamabad.

He added that the Afghan Foreign Minister Salahuddin Rabbani met with Pakistani officials on the sidelines of Shanghai Summit where they discussed the Torkham tensions.

He said that Rabbani will brief officials in Kabul about his meeting with Pakistani officials and also about the Shanghai Summit that reviewed the fight against terrorism, drugs trade and trafficking as well as about cooperation for security in the region.

Mon, 27 Jun 2016 07:51:10 GMT
TOLOnews 10pm News 26 June 2016 10pm-news-26-June-2016Top news in this Bulletin:

Up to 45,000 Madrasas in Pakistan continue to train, fund and send terrorists to fight against Afghanistan, the The Ministry of Defense (MoD) said on Sunday.

To watch the whole news bulletin, click here:


Afghanistan is by a long way still the world's largest opium producer, accounting for some 70 percent (3,300 tons) of global opium production, according to the United Nations World Drug Report of 2016.

Mon, 27 Jun 2016 07:10:27 GMT
MEHWAR: Activities of Afghanistan's Representative to UN Discussed Mehwar 26 June 2016

In this episode of Mehwar, host Jamalnasir Farahmand discusses the activities of Mahmoud Saikal, Afghanistan's permanent representative to the United Nations.

Mahmoud Saikal is his guest in this episode.

Click here for full episode:


Mon, 27 Jun 2016 06:10:34 GMT
MEHWAR: Govt's Counter-Narcotics Activities Reviewed Mehwar 26 June-2016

A number of drug addicts in a drug rehabilitation center at Camp Phoenix on Sunday accused the government of neglecting its duties by keeping silent about of the increase of poppy cultivation, drugs production and trafficking in the country.

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In this episode of Mehwar, host Jamal Nasir Faragmand discusses the topic with Mohammad Shoaib Hasib, a music instructor.


Mon, 27 Jun 2016 05:59:58 GMT
MEHWAR: Increase of Crimes in Kabul Discussed Mehwar-26-June-2016

In this episode of Mehwar, host Jamal Nasir Farahmand discusses the increase of crimes in Kabul with Fraidoon Obaidi, head of Kabul's Criminal Investigation Department.

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Mon, 27 Jun 2016 05:52:48 GMT
Iranian Schools Enroll Afghan Students Free of Charge afghan student Iran

A new decree issued by Iran's Interior Ministry enables Afghan refugees in the country to get schooling for their children free of charge, Iranian media reported.

The Afghan families residing in Iran will no more have to pay any fee to sign up their children in Iranian schools, the Iranian Interior Ministry said.

Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Seyed Ali Khamenei issued an order last year stressing that all Afghan children, even children of the undocumented migrants living in the country illegally, have the right to register and study in the country's schools.

Last year, Afghanistan's Minister of Refugees and Repatriation Seyed Hussain Alemi Balkhi lauded Iran for providing Afghan children with the opportunity to receive education on Imam Khamenei's orders.

According to reports, at least two million Afghan refugees are living in Iran.


Mon, 27 Jun 2016 05:18:21 GMT
TAWDE KHABARE: Daesh Activities in Nangarhar Reviewed Tawde-Khabare-26-June-2016

At least 131 Daesh fighters were killed in fighting with Afghan security forces in Nangarhar province, local officials said.

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The battle started early on Friday after hundreds of Dash rebels attacked security forces' outpost in Kot district, Nangarhar governor Salim Kunduzi said.

In this episode of Tawde Khabare, host Shapoor Bakhtiyar discusses the topic with following guests:

• Saleh Mohammad Saleh, MP
• Zabihullah Zemarai, member of Nangarhar Provincial Council
• Akbar Stanikzai, MP


Mon, 27 Jun 2016 04:39:34 GMT
FARAKHABAR: Drug Addicts Accuse Govt of Negligence FaraKhabar-26-June-2016

A number of drug addicts in a drug rehabilitation center at Camp Phoenix on Sunday accused the government of neglecting its duties by keeping silent about of the increase of poppy cultivation, drugs production and trafficking in the country.

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In this episode of FaraKhabar, host Fawad Aman discusses the topic with lawmakers Abdul Rauf Enami and Naeem Lalai Hamidzai.


Mon, 27 Jun 2016 03:42:02 GMT
Militant Group Loyal to Haqqanis Arrested in Khost

An 11-member insurgent group loyal to Haqqani network was arrested in a military operation carried out by security forces in Khost province, the National Directorate of Security (NDS) said in statement.

The crackdown was conducted in Khost city, the statement said, adding that the group was accused of subversive activities, kidnappings, placing roadside mines, among others, the statement added.

A number of weapons were also sized during the operation, it said.

The statement however did not provide further details about the operation.



Mon, 27 Jun 2016 03:12:23 GMT
TOLOnews 6pm News 26 June 2016 zaki26-16Top news in this Bulletin:

Up to 45,000 Madrasas in Pakistan continue to train, fund and send terrorists to fight against Afghanistan, the The Ministry of Defense (MoD) said on Sunday.

To watch the whole news bulletin, click here:


 Afghanistan is by a long way still the world's largest opium producer, accounting for some 70 percent (3,300 tons) of global opium production, according to the United Nations World Drug Report of 2016.

Sun, 26 Jun 2016 15:27:40 GMT
Torture Continues in Afghan Jails, Despite World Day in Support of Victims torture-26-16

While the 26th June is Marked as International Day in Support of Victims of Torture, Afghanistan's Independent Human Rights Commission (AIHRC) says prisoners were still being tortured in the county's jails.

Earlier the United Nations said that progress had been made to curb torture in Afghan jails, but claimed were still are cases of cruelty against prisoners.

Murtaza Nekzad is a victim. He was in jail for five years during the civil war and was subjected to constant torture.

"I had a stroke last year because of the impact of psychological issues stemming from difficulties of the time. I have get a lot of torture injuries to my head," victim Murtaza Nekzad said.

"Regrettably the government of Afghanistan has not made significant progress in ending torture. Perpetrators are not brought to justice." AIHRC spokesman Rafiullah Bedar said. Torture has also left a major impact on his psychological health.

"There was severe torture during the era of the Taliban regime as well as at the time of the Mujahedeen government," political analyst Mia Gul Khalid said.

Afghanistan signed International Convention Against Torture in 1985. However systematic torture continued in the country despite the country having signed the UN convention.

"They were torturing us, forcing us to stay awake, I remember that for one week we were kept awake all the time," Khalid said.

According to statistics of United Nations Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA) 278 detainees out of 790 detainees were tortured in Afghan jails. The UNAMA conducted investigations during 2013 and 2014 and assessed 128 detention centers.

On 12 December 1997, by resolution 52/149, the UN General Assembly proclaimed 26 June the United Nations International Day in Support of Victims of Torture, with a view to the total eradication of torture and the effective functioning of the Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment, (resolution 39/46), annex, which entered into force on 26 June 1987.

Sun, 26 Jun 2016 13:57:49 GMT
Family of Deceased ANA Soldier Share Ordeal soldier-26

Mashooq served in the ranks of the Afghan National Army (ANA) and assigned to combat duty in the southern Helmand province five months ago where he and his fellow soldiers were helping to secure the nation against insurgents.

Two weeks ago Mashooq lost his life doing his duty. He has left five children and a widow behind, his oldest son is also a heart patient.

Mashooq's body was handed over to his family in Kabul's Sardar Mohammad Dawoud Khan Hospital and buried in his native town in Kapisa province.

"I am proud of the sacrifice of my brother made for the country," said Mashooq's brother Maqbool.

Mashooq was the only breadwinner of his family. Mashooq's father and two other brothers were in prison for their alleged involvement in a murder. "I heard about Mashooq's martyrdom an hour ago, I attended his burial ceremony on bail," Mashooq's father said.

"The government should help Mashooq's family," a relative of the deceased solder said.

"Mashooq has left five children and a widow behind, his younger child is only five months old, he has never seen his father," said Mashooq's mother.

He joined the ANA seven months ago. He had also served his country in rank of Afghan National Police (ANP) for seven years.

Sun, 26 Jun 2016 13:37:29 GMT
30 Daesh Fighters Killed In Nangarhar Drone Strikes drone-26-1

Nearly 30 Daesh fighters were killed in drone strikes carried out by foreign troops in Kot district in Nangarhar province, local officials said.

Nangarhar governor spokesman Attaullah Khogyani told TOLOnews that the airstrikes were carried out at around 4pm local time on Sunday.

He said the air raids targeted Daesh hideouts in Kot district.

Parts of Kot district in Nangarhar have witnessed heavy fighting between Afghan security forces and Daesh rebels, where the insurgents have suffered heavy losses over the past two days.

Sun, 26 Jun 2016 13:25:04 GMT
Government Slammed For Not Protecting Investors kidnap-26

Investors have slammed the Afghan government for its lack of adequate action against the unprecedented rise of kidnappings and hostage-taking incidents in Kabul city and on the nation's highways.

This follows only hours after a group of armed men on Sunday attempted to kidnap an investor in the city center.

Reacting to the recent spate of security threats and the rise in the number of attempts to abduct investors, the Afghanistan Chamber of Commerce and Industries criticized the government for not been able to ensure the safety of visiting businessmen. It is a rising trend, the ACCI believes, that will have negative repercussions for investments in and consequently of the economic development of the country.

"Because necessary measures are not being taken to ensure the safety of businessmen, this will have a severe and adverse impact on the interests of investors wanting to invest money in the country," deputy head of ACCI Khan Jan Alokozai said.

On Sunday night, a group of armed men attempted to kidnap a businessman from his location in Kabul as he was on his way to attend prayers at a nearby mosque. The attempt failed after the businessman managed to enter the mosque and ask for help.

"We were praying in the mosque when a man entered shouting for help. He said his attackers wanted kill him," eye witness Samiullah said. The armed men fired shots at the businessman, but missed.

"The Minister of interior has had a meeting with all police officers of Kabul today. He ordered them to do everything they could to ensure the security of Kabul and foil criminal acts," said Sediq Sediqqi, spokesman to ministry of interior.

Our TOLOnews reporter tried to contact Abdul Wali Qurbani, the victim of the attempted kidnapping, but did not succeed.

Over 40 businessmen have been abducted in Afghanistan over the past two months, eleven of them in the capital Kabul itself.

Concerns are growing over the recent sharp rise in kidnappings in Kabul city. Two weeks ago, armed men kidnapped an Indian woman in Kabul. Her fate remains unknown.

Sun, 26 Jun 2016 13:19:00 GMT
State Accused of neglecting Counter-Narcotics Duties drugs-26-16

A number of drug addicts in a drug rehabilitation center at Camp Phoenix on Sunday accused the government of neglecting its duties by keeping silent about of the increase of poppy cultivation, drugs production and trafficking in the country.

They said the main reason behind drug addiction is the rise in poppy cultivation and opium production in the country, adding that Afghanistan will face a big crisis if this was not stopped.

"I want to regain the respect and dignity I had among the people," said Mujtaba Haidari, a patient at the rehab center, who had worked as an interpreter with foreigners.

Another Afghan citizen, Mohammad Omar Mirzaee, who was addicted to drugs after migrating to Iran, said he has a graduate in Dari literature, but due to his addiction to drugs, he had now been ostracized from society.

"I was a drug addict when I was 18 years old. I could never quit my addiction. This is the first time that I have come here to the facility to recover," he said.

Ahmad Zahir Sultani, head of the rehab center said "addicts that do recover and quit addiction are introduced to Ministry of Labor and Social Affairs. The ministry then provides them with job opportunity and skills."

Sunday June 26 is the International Day Against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking. According to figures, over one million women and children are using different kinds of drugs in Afghanistan.

Sun, 26 Jun 2016 13:14:38 GMT
Afghanistan Still World's Largest Opium Producer by Far report-storytoday

Afghanistan is by a long way still the world's largest opium producer, accounting for some 70 percent (3,300 tons) of global opium production, according to the United Nations World Drug Report of 2016.

Myanmar is the second largest producer of the drug at 14 per cent (650 tons) of global production.

According to the UN report, the total value of the illicit opiate economy in Afghanistan was $2.8 billion USD in 2014 — equivalent to 13 percent of the country's gross domestic product (GDP).

The Afghan Ministry of Counter Narcotics (MoCN) said the income from illegal drugs business in the country is at $70 billion USD annually, but down by nearly $9 billion.

"A limited budget and not enough facilities are among the main problems in our campaigns against the illicit production of drugs. Our budget is insufficient. It is claimed the United States has so far spend $8.5 billion USD to combat the drugs trade. We want an explanation about the process through which the money was spend to fight drugs trade," said MoCN spokesman Mohammad Hanif Danishyar.

He added: "We are not satisfied with the result of the campaign and neither are the American people."

Danishyar said primary figures reveal that poppy is being cultivated in 20 provinces of Afghanistan.

According to the ministry, Helmand, Farah, Uruzgan, Nangarhar, Badakhshan, Badghis and Nimroz provinces are among the provinces with the highest poppy cultivation.

Badakhshan lawmaker Safiullah Muslim said he is concerned about the current high levels of poppy cultivation in the country, because, as in Badakhshan, the money from drugs goes directly into the pockets of militants.

"Poppy is cultivated in Tashkan, Darayem, Argo among other districts of Badakhshan. We have always urged government to prevent the illegal drugs business but it has not paid the required attention to this state of affairs so far," he added.

The MoCN said the government has arrested nearly 70 drug traffickers this year and has seized their drugs. Despite that, the Afghan government, particularly the judicial organs, are being criticized for not arresting the main drug lords.

According to the UN annual report, focus group discussions were held in 2015 for the first time. These workshops included women in four of the northern provinces in order to learn more about their attitudes to, and participation in poppy cultivation and production.

The discussions revealed that women in Afghanistan took part in many of the labor-intensive processes in opium poppy production. This included the weeding and clearing of fields, as well as lancing of the poppy buds. They were also involved in indoor operations breaking opium poppy capsules, removing and cleaning seeds, preparing opium gum for sale and processing by-products such as oil and soap.

In most rural communities in Afghanistan, women were less empowered than men and had only a limited role in decision-making. Decisions about opium poppy cultivation were therefor mainly taken by men, although it appeared that women were increasingly being consulted about decisions to cultivate opium poppy.

In the absence of access to adequate health-care facilities in rural areas, opium had been used for generations by women in northern Afghanistan as a remedy for the most common ailments among children, such as coughs, colic, aches and pains, restlessness and diarrhea.

The UN report indicates that at the country level, Iran reported the largest opiate seizures worldwide in 2014, accounting for 75 percent of global opium seizures, 61 percent of global morphine seizures and 17 percent of global heroin seizures.

The next largest heroin seizures were reported by Turkey (accounting for 16 percent of global heroin seizures), China (12 percent), Pakistan (9 percent), Kenya (7 percent), the United States (7 percent), Afghanistan (5 percent) and the Russian Federation (3 percent).

Seizures involving Afghan opiates account for some 80 percent of global seizures of opiates, the report says.

Sun, 26 Jun 2016 13:06:59 GMT
Pakistani Madrasas Foster Terrorists to Wage War Against Afghans: MoD madrassa-story-june26

Up to 45,000 Madrasas in Pakistan continue to train, fund and send terrorists to fight against Afghanistan, the The Ministry of Defense (MoD) said on Sunday.

According to the MoD, terrorists currently fighting the Afghan security forces are fostered in the Pakistani Madrasas. The terrorists are educated and equipped and then dispatched to Afghanistan to attack the Afghan government forces.

Afghan officials have consistently stated that there is a link between certain Madrasas in Pakistan and the hardline militant groups sent to fight Afghanistan and its international partners. The majority of the terrorists captured by Afghan forces in battles have confessed that they were trained and equipped in Pakistani Madrasas and then sent in Afghanistan to fight.

"There are around 45,000 Madrasas in Pakistan along the border regions and Khyber Pakhtunkhaw. If each of the involved Madrasas recruited only one person, it amounted to around 45,000 recruits a month," a defense ministry spokesman Dawlat Waziri said.

Political commentators have cautiously reacted to the MoD claims, saying not all Madrasas should be blamed for involvement in terrorist activities and militancy.

"It is difficult to confirm that all 45,000 Madrasas are involved in training terrorists and extremists, however, some of these Madrasas are involved in such activities," political analyst Rahmatullah Bezhanpor said.

The MOD statement comes at a time when critics have frequently blamed the Afghan government for not defining a coherent war strategy and ensuring better leadership on the battlefields.

"There is no need for large number of soldiers in a war. The war effort rather requires strong leadership and management to boost morale among existing troops," political analyst Haroon Mir said.

The Pakistani Madrasas remain a potent threat to Afghanistan's security.

Sun, 26 Jun 2016 12:54:09 GMT
Kabul Zoo Visitors Grow, say Officials zoo-june-26-report

The Kabul Zoo is experiencing a sharp annual rise in visitors as over 1,500 visitors on weekdays and nearly 5,000 over weekends come to see the animals, say officials

The income from the zoo, the only one in the country, has increased by up to 40 percent over the past three months – compared to the 12 months of last year.

Mostly families come to visit the Kabul Zoo which hosts nearly 600 animals.

"It is the Ramazan month. We are students, we study and then want to refresh our minds by visiting such places," said Yalda, a school student.

Another student said: "We came here. It was a fun."

"Such places should be built in other areas as well to make it easy for the citizens to spend their time having fun," said Nadir, a Kabul resident.

According to officials, up to 700,000 people visited the zoo this year, adding 17 million Afghanis to its income.

"We are trying to apply a better design for the zoo to enable the spectators to see the animal more easily," said Aziz Gul Saqib, head of the Kabul Zoo.

According to Saqib the zoo has earned nearly 7 million Afghanis over the past three months.

Sun, 26 Jun 2016 12:51:18 GMT
TOLOnews 10pm News 25 June 2016 10pm-news-25-June-2016Top news in this Bulletin:

The U.S forces in Afghanistan have launched new air strikes against Taliban targets in recent days under a new plan approved earlier this month by the U.S President Barack Obama.

To watch the whole news bulletin, click here:


Afghan Minister of Foreign Affairs Salahuddin Rabbani and Sartaj Aziz, advisor to Pakistani prime minister on foreign relations, have agreed to define a fresh mechanism to resolve border disputes along the Durand Line and Angor Ada.

Sun, 26 Jun 2016 08:25:18 GMT
131 Daesh Fighters Killed In Nangarhar's Ongoing Clash afghan-soldier-hesarak-district-of-nangarhar

At least 131 Daesh fighters were killed in an ongoing fighting with Afghan security forces in Nangarhar province, local officials said on Sunday.

According to the officials, seven security force members and five civilians were killed and 31 others including 13 civilians were wounded in this clash, which continues over the past two days.

The battle started early on Friday after hundreds of Dash rebels attacked security forces' outpost in Kot district, Nangarhar governor Salim Kunduzi told TOLOnews.

He said the clash still continues in Sayed Ahmad Khail and Sepai villages in the district and that over 200 local police force members were deployed to clear the area of militants.

He added that airstrikes inflicted most of the casualties to the insurgents.

"Nearly 36 Daesh rebels were killed in face-to-face battle with security forces, 95 others were killed in airstrikes. The clashes still continue [in Kot]," he said.

TOLOnews reporter, Ziar Yaad, who reports from Nangarhar, said the airstrikes were carried out by foreign troops.

Meanwhile, Gen. Dad Mohammad Harifi, the National Directorate of Security (NDS) chief in Nangarhar said: "According to intelligence reports, nearly 600 Daesh fighters attacked the district and that the security forces are trying to eliminate them."

Nangarhar police chief Zorawar Zahid meanwhile said the military operation will continue in Kot to eliminate all the insurgents.

"Nearly 200 local police force members were deployed in Kot to clear the area. After this, the terrorists will face a major response from the security forces," Zahid said.

A number of tribal elders in Nangarhar announced their support to Afghan security forces in fight against Daesh rebels in the province.

"The security forces need the support of the people and we will support them, because they ensure our safety," Assadullah, a tribal elder in Nangarhar said.

According to reports, Daesh fighters are mostly active in Nangarhar, particularly in Kot and Achin districts.

Sun, 26 Jun 2016 07:33:19 GMT
Afghanistan Name ex-Indian Batsman Rajput As New Coach Afghancricketteamstoryjune26

Afghanistan Cricket Board (ACB) has named former Indian batsman Lalchand Rajput as the head coach of the national cricket team.

Rajput is replacing the ex-Pakistani captain Inzamam-ul-Haq, 46, who resigned from the post in April to become Pakistan's chief selector.

Under Inzamam, Afghanistan reached the Super 10 stage of this year's World Twenty20, and were the only team to defeat eventual winners West Indies during the tournament.

According to reports, Rajput's name was recommended by the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI). He is in line for a two-year contract, but the decision would be finalized after the upcoming tour of Europe.

Born in Mumbai, 54 years old Rajput played two tests and four ODI matches between 1985 and 1987.

After his retirement, Rajput served as joint secretary of Mumbai Cricket Association. He also took up coaching, which included successful stints with the India Under-19 and 'A' teams.

Rajput was the manager of the Indian team which won the inaugural World T20 in 2007. He was the coach of the Mumbai Indians in the Indian Premier League in 2008.

Afghanistan Cricket Board chairman Nasimullah Danish said: "Mr. Rajput has coached the Indian Under-19 Cricket side as well as the Mumbai Indians franchise in the IPL. His experience is a key asset for Afghanistan Cricket."

"Mr. Rajput is technically and professionally strong coach in cricket, I am sure his presence with Afghan national cricket team will benefit the squad. He will be joining the team for the Scotland, Ireland and the Netherlands tour," he added.

Danish said that another former India player Mohammad Kaif had also applied for the post.

"We have received several applications from all over the world. Lalchand Rajput and also Mohammad Kaif were shortlisted for the final round of interview. However Rajput was selected by the selection committee," he said.

Sun, 26 Jun 2016 06:55:46 GMT