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IEC Sets New Date for Parliamentary Elections

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(Last Updated On: March 11, 2018)

Afghanistan’s Independent Election Commission (IEC) on Sunday said the long-delayed parliamentary and district council elections will be held next year in the month of Mizan (Afghan date which corresponds to Sept-Oct 2018).

Waseema Badghisi, operational deputy chief of the IEC, emphasized that there is no concern for more delays in holding the elections and the exact date will be announced soon.

“Technically, there will be a delay from one to three months. The election date will not be in the winter; it will be in fall,” Badghisi said.

However, election observers express concern regarding the government willing to hold elections and accuses the IEC for being incapable.

“If the government is having a will to hold elections and the international community back us, the elections will happen, but yet the government has no intention,” Naeem Ayoubzada, Executive Director of Transparent Election Foundation of Afghanistan (TEFA) said.

“The election must not be delayed to November or December because a lot of people were unable to attend in the elections in the past due to the cold weather,” Yousuf Rasheed, Executive Director of Free and Fair Election Forum of Afghanistan (FEFA) added.

This comes as earlier the IEC announced that the parliamentary and district council election will be held on July 7, 2018, but the scheduled date was postponed due to rifts in the election commission, lack of budget and security issues.

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Police arrest irresponsible armed men, rescue woman – Takhar

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(Last Updated On: May 30, 2020)

Afghan forces have arrested a group of irresponsible armed men in operation in Takhar province, rescuing a woman, police confirmed.

The operation was conducted in Pir Kanda Kaw, Persian name, area in Farkhar district of the province on Friday night.

Khalil Asir, a spokesman for the provincial police told Ariana News that the gang’s head was shot dead in fire exchanges and six members of the bands were detained by police. 

Asir added that a woman – Kabul’s resident – who was abducted by the gang has been rescued.

Meanwhile, Afghan forces have seized a number of weapons and ammo of the group during the raids.

The band was involved in murders, armed robbery, kidnappings, and harassment of people, Police further said.

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ATN employee Sulaiman Yousufi dies of Coronavirus

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(Last Updated On: May 29, 2020)

COVID19 took the life of an employee of the Ariana International Television Network.

Sulaiman Yousufi, an employee of Ariana News and Ariana TV, died of coronavirus today.

Mr. Sulaiman Yousufi was infected by the Coronavirus a few days ago and died early today after severe suffering from respiratory troubles.

Yousufi had been working in the transportation department of Ariana TV and Ariana News for over a decade.

He is survived by a son and two daughters.

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Prisoner release; Taliban’s technical team negotiating with gov’t

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(Last Updated On: May 29, 2020)

Both the Taliban team and the government are negotiating on how to verify and release the prisoners, as well as obtaining guarantees of not returning to the war, Arg said.

An agreement on peace between the Taliban and the government has not yet been reached, but the US-Taliban peace agreement which was signed three months ago in Doha, Qatar says that the Afghan government should release 5,000 Taliban prisoners in exchange for 1,000 prisoners from the Taliban side.

A Taliban delegation is now in Kabul negotiating the prisoners’ release.

However, the Taliban has said that the team was in Kabul only to monitor the release of prisoners and has no further authority over other aspects of the peace process.

The Afghan government and the Taliban in their latest actions came to an agreement about a three-day ceasefire on the occasion of Eid ul-Fitr.

The Afghan government is now urging the Taliban to take new and more practical steps in the process of starting Intra-Afghan negotiations.

Arg said that the government’s negotiating team was ready and that the government was committed to take new measures.

Sediq Sediqqi, the presidential spokesman said that the Afghan government had taken major steps towards peace and it was time for the Taliban to show the green light.

Sources close to the Taliban said that the unannounced ceasefire by the group is ongoing, but they will not start the Intra-Afghan negotiations until thousands of the Taliban prisoners are released.

The United States and the international community are waiting for the Afghan government and the Taliban to begin the first round of Intra-Afghan Talks, as the start of these talks could open new doors to the Afghan peace process.

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