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Atmar tells Qureshi ‘premature’ remarks on alleged abduction are concerning

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(Last Updated On: July 19, 2021)

Afghan Foreign Minister Hanif Atmar spoke Monday with Pakistan’s Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi about the investigation into the alleged abduction of the daughter of Afghanistan’s ambassador to Islamabad, and expressed his concerns over the remarks made by the country’s interior minister.

Atmar said unprofessional comments and premature judgments severely damage bilateral relations and the credibility of ongoing investigations.

According to a statement issued by the Afghan Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Atmar said that Afghanistan is ready to cooperate with the government of Pakistan in advancing the investigation in order to apprehend and prosecute the perpetrators of the alleged crime and to ensure the security of Afghan political missions and diplomats in that country.

A delegation is also scheduled to visit Pakistan, where further steps will be taken regarding the return of the Afghan ambassador and diplomats in light of the delegation’s findings, the statement read.

MoFA said Qureshi said that the case of Silsila Alikhail, who was allegedly abducted in Islamabad for a brief period, will be pursued seriously.

Qureshi added that under the direct guidance of the Prime Minister Imran Khan, “the investigation into this matter will be completed soon and its implementation will be clear”.

Qureshi assured Atmar of the country’s efforts to ensure the security of Afghanistan’s political missions and diplomats, MoFA stated.

This comes after the Afghan ambassador and diplomats returned to Kabul over the weekend for security reasons.

By late Monday morning, the Pakistani ambassador to Kabul had in turn returned to Islamabad. The reasons for his return were not however made public.

On Sunday, Pakistan’s Minister for Interior Sheikh Rasheed Ahmed said no abduction had taken place.

According to him, this was “an international conspiracy. An agenda of RAW (India’s intelligence services)”.

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Bayat Foundation in Ghazni to help needy families

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(Last Updated On: December 2, 2021)

The Bayat Foundation continues to help vulnerable families across Afghanistan and this week distributed hundreds of food parcels to people in central Ghazni province.

The foundation’s officials said they had so far distributed essential food supplies to deserving people in Herat, Balkh, Khost, Kunduz, Kandahar, and Bamiyan provinces.

Haji Mohammad Ismail, deputy head of the Bayat Foundation, stated: “Through its continued assistance, the Bayat Foundation was in Ghazni [to distribute aid] and further assistance will be distributed in other provinces soon.”

The foundation said it will do its best to reach vulnerable families during winter.

Grateful recipients of the food aid thanked the Bayat Foundation and said the packages were badly needed.

“We are thankful to the Bayat Foundation that provided us with foodstuff such are flour, rice, and oil and we call for further assistance,” one of the recipients said.

Another recipient added: “I am pleased that the Bayat Foundation is helping needy people during this cold winter.”

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UN seeks record $41 billion for aid to hotspots including Afghanistan

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(Last Updated On: December 2, 2021)

The United Nations appealed on Thursday for $41 billion to provide life-saving assistance next year to a record 183 million people worldwide caught up in conflict and poverty, led by a tripling of its programme in Afghanistan.

Famine remains a “terrifying prospect” for 45 million people living in 43 countries, as extreme weather caused by climate change reduces food supplies, it said in the annual appeal reflecting a 17% rise in annual funding needs.

“The drivers of needs are ones which are familiar to all of us. Tragically, it includes protracted conflicts, political instability, failing economies… the climate crisis, not a new crisis, but one which urges more attention and of course the Covid-19 pandemic,” UN aid chief Martin Griffiths told a news briefing on Wednesday.

In a report to donors, the world body said: “Without sustained and immediate action, 2022 could be catastrophic.”

Afghanistan, Syria, Yemen, Ethiopia and Sudan are the five major crises requiring the most funding, topped by $4.5 billion sought for Afghanistan where “needs are skyrocketing”, it said.

In Afghanistan, more than 24 million people require life-saving assistance to prevent catastrophe, a dramatic increase driven by political tumult, repeated economic shocks, and the severe food insecurity caused by the worst drought in 27 years, Reuters reported.

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Four wounded in Kabul blast

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(Last Updated On: December 2, 2021)

The Emergency Hospital in Kabul has confirmed four people were wounded in an IED explosion in Salim Karwan square in PD4 around midday Thursday.

The Emergency Hospital said in a tweet that the injured were taken to the hospital from the scene of the explosion.

The hospital said a child was among the injured adding the incident was caused by a magnetic IED attached to a vehicle.

Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan’s (IEA) Interior Ministry spokesman Saeed Khosti, however, said the incident was caused by an IED placed in a pot. He also claimed that there were no casualties in the blast.

No individual or group has claimed responsibility for the attack.

Two days ago, Kabul witnessed another explosion. The blast, which targeted an IEA vehicle, wounded five people, including members of the IEA.

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