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Despite ‘Immense’ Pushback Gov’t Determined to Tackle Corruption: Ghani

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(Last Updated On: December 9, 2018)

President Ashraf Ghani said on Monday despite persistence of the corrupt and immense pushback, they are making inroads in eradicating corruption from the government.

Speaking on International Anti-Corruption Day, Ghani said after 09/11 incident, Afghanistan has received billions of dollars in aid but he said Afghans have failed to manage the assistance in a way to control Afghanistan’s water resources and to build roads and infrastructures.

“We have preferred our personal interests than national interests, and it led the international community to ask us – we have helped you and what you have done in return? –  we should give a response,” Ghani said.

The president, meanwhile, said that a legal framework was instituted by Afghan National Strategy for Combating Corruption and that it is in the process of implementation, adding that so far the process has seen through indictment and jailing of high-ranking civil and military officials.

“Recruitment of 22,000 civil servants based on the transparent open competition by Administrative Reform and Civil Services Commission, and awarding of contracts through a transparent process via National Procurement Authority are a couple of examples that indicate our commitment,” he said.

At the event, Second Vice President Sarwar Danish said that tackling corruption should become a culture in order to eradicate this phenomenon.

“Lack of capacity in the government institutions is a challenge. fighting corruption should become a culture. People should help us in resolving corruption issues,” he said. “We still have weaknesses and challenges while implementing the rule of law and we need the support international institutions in this regard.”

Tadamichi Yamamoto, U.N. Secretary General’s Special Representative to Afghanistan, John Bass, U.S. ambassador to Afghanistan Sir Nicholas Kay, U.K. ambassador to Afghanistan and national and international organizations were also present.

According to president’s office statement, they acknowledged government’s sustained focus and commitment to root out corruption. While admiring enactment of laws and implementation of processes such as Access to Information Law, Mining Law, continued implementation of inherent law, publication of national budget and asset declaration.

They reiterated their commitment to stand with the Afghan government while they continue to combat corruption. They said that the legal framework and required architecture are in place, but the Afghan government and its international partners need to make sure that architecture is effective.

During the event, high-ranking government officials, including President Ghani signed a commitment letter affirming to be transparent, open and ethical in their daily conducts.

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Dr. Ayaz Niazi killed in mosque explosion – Kabul

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(Last Updated On: June 2, 2020)

At least two people – including Mohammad Ayaz Niazi, imam of Wazir Akbar Khan mosque – were killed and three others wounded in a bomb blast inside a mosque in Kabul city, the Interior Ministry confirmed.

Tariq Arian, a spokesman for the Interior Ministry said that the explosion took place at around 7:25 p.m. in Wazir Akbar Khan mosque while people were gathered for evening prayers.

Mohammad Ayaz Niazi, imam of the mosque also lost his life in the attack, the official added.

All the injured individuals have been taken to hospital.

According to the ministry, police defused another bomb at the attack scene.

Meanwhile, the Presidential Palace condemned the “terror attack,” saying attacks on mosques, hospitals, and other civilian sites are anti-humanitarian act.

No group or individual has claimed responsibility for the attack.

 

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UN: Taliban have not cut ties with al-Qaeda

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(Last Updated On: June 2, 2020)

According to the latest report by the Security Council of the United Nations, the Taliban have not cut ties with al-Qaeda, even after a peace deal with the United States.

The United Nations has said in a report that al-Qaeda in Afghanistan has been secretly conducting military operations in collusion with the Taliban, and that the group has even held several meetings with al-Qaeda leaders lately to strengthen their ties.

In its latest report, the UN Security Council has revealed the Taliban’s close ties to al-Qaeda, even after a peace deal between the United States and the Taliban. According to the report, al-Qaeda is active in 12 Afghan provinces, with an estimated 400 to 600 military personnel.

The United Nations has said that al-Qaeda leaders have met with the Taliban for more than six times over that last 12 months, and Gul Agha Ishaqzai, a former adviser to Mullah Mohammad Omar, has assured al-Qaeda leaders that the Taliban not will cut ties with al-Qaeda at any cost.

The UN report said, “Al-Qaida and the Taliban held  meetings  over  the course  of  2019  and  in  early  2020  to  discuss  cooperation  related  to  operational, training  and  the  provision  by  the  Taliban  of  safe  havens  for Al-Qaida members  inside Afghanistan. Al-Qaida is covertly active in 12 Afghan provinces. Monitoring Team’s estimate is between 400 and 600 armed operatives.”

“According to interlocutors, al-Zawahiri met with members of the Haqqani Network in February 2020. Hafiz Azizuddin Haqqani (not listed) and Yahya Haqqani (TAi.169)19consulted al-Zawahiri over the agreement with the United States and the peace process,” added the statement.

However, Zalmay Khalilzad, the US special envoy for Afghanistan’s peace, has said that the Taliban had pledged to cut their relationships with terrorist groups in exchange for the withdrawal of the US troops.

Khalilzad has said that The United States is monitoring the implementation of the Taliban’s commitment to the peace agreement, and under this agreement the Taliban will in no way host terrorist groups and severe ties with al-Qaeda.

On the other hand, Sayed Akbar Agha, a former Taliban member, said that The United Nations wants to hide its failure by saying that the Taliban is linked to al-Qaeda, noting “I don’t think they have any evidence to prove that.”

The Afghan government has also previously spoken of the Taliban’s close ties to ISIS and other terrorist groups, including al-Qaeda.

The Taliban denied the UN report’s statements regarding the group.

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Coronavirus Afghanistan updates; cases hike to 16,509

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(Last Updated On: June 2, 2020)

The Ministry of Public Health said that 759 new positive cases of Coronavirus have been reported in Afghanistan, bringing the total number of cases to 16,509.

Wahidullah Majrooh, a deputy for the Ministry of Public Health said, “In the past 24 hours, 1,322 cases were examined, of which 759 were tested positive, with 22 recoveries and five deaths.”

The new registries in the capital and provinces are reported as follows: Kabul with 266 cases, Herat 212, Balkh 39, Nangarhar 34, Paktia 66, Baghlan 27, Bamyan 21, Ghazni 18, Takhar 17, Faryab 18, Khost 25, Parwan four, Kapisa seven, Samangan two, and Badakhshan with three cases.

The Ministry of Public Health once again warns that if the people do not cooperate in the fight against the Coronavirus, the pandemic will affect all.

Wahidullah Majrooh, Deputy of the Ministry of Public Health, said, “Successful and effective treatment of the virus is dependent on every citizen of the country. A healthy diet and mental health will help to fight the Coronavirus. Let’s make sure we keep the community safe from the virus.”

The number of people infected with the Coronavirus is growing every day, raising public concerns.

The Ministry of Health emphasizes that the growing number of patients stems from people’s disregard for medical guidelines, which will result in the humanitarian crisis.

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