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Killing of Ariana News anchor sparks widespread outcry

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(Last Updated On: June 5, 2021)

The High Council for National Reconciliation said on Saturday they were saddened to learn that Mina Khairi, a young and talented host on Ariana News, was killed in an explosion on Thursday night in Kabul.

Khairi’s mother was also killed in the explosion.

The HCNR said “a number of our defenseless compatriots were killed and some were injured.

“The criminal terrorists show the height of their terror and crime by targeting defenseless and civilian people.

“At a time when all the people of Afghanistan are hoping for peace and waiting for the peace talks to end and for the war and killing in the country to end, the creation of such a crime and terror is against the national and popular spirit,” the HCNR said.

The HCNR condemned the incident, and expressed its condolences to the families of the victims, especially the family of Mina Khairi, their colleagues at Ariana News and the media, and wished the injured a speedy recovery.

Distraught relatives, friends and colleagues of Khairi meanwhile paid their last respects to her on Saturday.

The funeral was held in Kabul for both mother and daughter.

The popular news anchor was killed in Pul-e-Sokhta in Kabul’s western area. She had been with Ariana News since 2017.

Other reactions:

UK and the US embassies also reacted to her death.

“This cowardly attack against Mina Khairi represents an attack on all Afghan society and its vital #mediafreedom, just one month after #WorldPressFreedomDay. We condemn her murder and once again call for the campaign of violence against journalists & media professionals to end,” UK embassy said in a tweet.

Chargé d’Affaires Ross Wilson said: “Another Afghan journalist killed in Kabul, one of four female media workers killed in Afghanistan this year alone. My sincere condolences to Mina Khairi’s family, friends, and colleagues during this troubling time. I urge quick action to #ProtectJournalists nationwide.”

The Afghan Journalists Safety Committee (AJSC ) also decried the attack and called for an investigation.

“AJSC is deeply saddened to hear Mina Khairi, TV presenter at Ariana News and her mother are among the victims of yesterday’s blast in district 6 of Kabul city. We strongly condemn the attack & call on the government to seriously investigate the case,” AJSC said.

Pakistan ambassador Mansoor Ahmad Khan also condemned the attack.

“Deeply saddened on the deaths of Mina Khairi Ariana TV presenter and her mother in the blasts in Kabul and all those who lost lives in these blasts. Condemn terrorism in all forms and manifestations,” Khan tweeted.

Reporters without Borders (RSF) also condemned Khairi’s killing and called on the ICC’s prosecutor to investigate the killings of #journalists in #Afghanistan.

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India hosting key SCO anti-terror meeting

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(Last Updated On: May 16, 2022)

The Shanghai Cooperation Organisation’s (SCO) anti-terror body Regional Anti-Terrorist Structure (RATS) representatives came together Monday for the start of a three-day meeting in New Delhi.

Among those attending is a three-member Pakistani delegation that arrived in India on Saturday via the Wagah border.

The situation in Afghanistan and the worsening humanitarian crisis in the country is expected to be on the agenda.

According to Indian media reports, New Delhi is also expected to raise issues regarding the security situation in Afghanistan.

The RATS is the Executive Committee of the SCO, headquartered in Tashkent, Uzbekistan, which is a permanent unit of the organisation which serves to promote cooperation of member states against terrorism, separatism and extremism.

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IEA says girls’ schools will reopen soon

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(Last Updated On: May 16, 2022)

Zabihullah Mujahid, spokesman for the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan (IEA), and deputy minister of the IEA’s Ministry of Information and Culture, said progress has been made at a meeting of religious scholars and girls’ schools would reopen soon.

Speaking to reporters in Kabul on Sunday Mujahid said: “Good progress has been made at the meeting of the country’s scholars regarding the reopening of girls’ schools and other major political issues, and girls’ schools will be reopened in the near future.”

He said that the meeting, attended by tribal leaders and influential people of the country, is focusing on major political, security and social issues.

“The Ulema are consulting on the reopening of girls’ schools, and progress will be made soon,” said Mujahid.

Meanwhile, Anas Haqqani, a senior member of the Islamic Emirate, said on Wednesday that a meeting of religious scholars would be held to discuss the issue of girls going to school.

The closure of girls’ schools above the sixth grade sparked a major outcry around the world with the international community repeatedly calling for schools to reopen.

Officials at the Ministry of Education of the Islamic Emirate have said that they will reopen girls’ schools in the near future within the framework of Islamic principles.

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Uzbekistan to host international conference on Afghanistan

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(Last Updated On: May 16, 2022)

Tashkent will host a high-level international conference on Afghanistan at the end of July, Uzbekistan’s interim Minister of Foreign Affairs Vladimir Norov announced.

Norov said the key focus would be on security, political stability and the socio-economic development of the region.

“As for Afghanistan, unfortunately, we are seeing a decrease in the attention of the international community to the situation in this country. Meanwhile, the situation there remains difficult, due to the acute economic crisis and the difficult humanitarian situation, challenges to regional security and stability remain,” he said.

Tashkent Times reported that Norov felt the international community should take responsibility for the present and future of Afghanistan and provide continued assistance to resolve problems in the country.

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