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MoFA Condemns Removal of Afghan Flag by Pakistani Police

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(Last Updated On: October 10, 2019)

Afghan Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MoFA) issued a statement on Thursday protesting the removal of Afghan flag from a property in Peshawar City during an overnight operation by Pakistani police.

According to the statement, hundreds of Pakistani police have raided over Afghan Market in Peshawar City of Pakistan without giving a prior notice to the Afghan Consulate in Peshawar.

Police have disrespected and removed the Afghan flag and proprietorship board from the top of the market that had existed for decades, the statement added.

 “The Islamic Republic of Afghanistan condemns the irresponsible move of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa police and their insult to the national flag of Afghanistan. Afghanistan expresses its serious protest against this action and Pakistan’s denial regarding the case,” the MoFA statement further said.

Afghanistan claims the long-disputed Afghan Market in Peshawar city is the sole property of the Afghan government but Peshawar High Court has handed over the market to a Pakistani citizen named Shaukat Kashmiri after he filed a case claiming ownership of the market.

“The government of Afghanistan is emphasizing once again that the court has not considered the documents and legal justifications of Afghanistan, during the dispute, due to having political motivations. So, the Afghan judicial institutions is not satisfied with the decision made,” the statement concluded.

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Afghanistan, India sign MoUs for development of educational infrastructure

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(Last Updated On: July 5, 2020)

Memorandum of Understandings for the construction of five educational infrastructures was signed between Afghanistan and India on Sunday.

According to the agreement, three schools and two universities will be built in Nuristan, Farah, Badakhshan, and Kapisa with the cost of $ 2.6 million. 

The MoUs were signed by Economy Minister Mustafa Mastoor, Higher Education Minister Abdul Tawab Balakarzai, Deputy Education Minister Abdul Subhan Raouf, and Indian Ambassador to Afghanistan Vinay Kumar on Sunday.

The agreement envisages the construction of two schools in Badakhshan province and one school in Nuristan province for the Ministry of Education, and the construction of a road at Kapisa Medical University and the renovation of an educational building in Farah.

 “The construction cost of these schools is $ 900,000, which is in Badakhshan and Nuristan provinces,” said Abdul Subhan Rauf, deputy director of administration and finance at the Afghan Ministry of Education.

“These projects should be implemented by the Ministry of Economy as soon as possible,” said Abdul Tawab Balakarzai, Acting Minister of Higher Education.

India’s ambassador to Afghanistan says that the launch of the projects will help increase the capacity of students in Afghanistan adding that apart from physical projects in Afghanistan, India has worked in building capacity of youth in Afghanistan as well.

Since 2005, India has implemented 400 developmental projects in cooperation with the Ministry of Economy, which promises to help Afghanistan in the long run in various areas.

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Afghanistan, Turkmenistan, Azerbaijan to expand trade ties

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(Last Updated On: July 3, 2020)

Afghanistan, Turkmenistan, and Azerbaijan have agreed to form a joint committee to expand trade and transportation relations. 

The leaders of the three countries in an online meeting discussed the formation of a joint committee that could work on regional connectivity, railway development, fiber optics, and transportation.

In a tripartite meeting between Afghan President Ashraf Ghani, Turkmen President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedow, and Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev, the three leaders discussed trade cooperation. They agreed on the proposal of the President of Azerbaijan to form a joint delegation, which includes ministers of transport and other officials from the three countries.

Afghan President Mohammad Ashraf Ghani welcomed the proposal of the President of Azerbaijan to form a joint delegation of the three countries

At the meeting, the President of Turkmenistan supported the plan of the port of Aqina and Turgundi to better transmit commercial goods.

“So the first thing is to welcome President Aliyev’s suggestion backed by President Berdimuhamedow that we form a joint task force at the level of heads of transports and other relevant ministries from the three ministries,” said Afghan Pres. Ghani.

During the meeting, Mr. Ghani also announced the development of a railway in Afghanistan, saying that the country needs 4,000 to 6,000 kilometers of railways for economic development and that international partners have expressed readiness to cooperate in this area.

Turkmenistan has expanded the railway network to the ports of Aqina and Torghundi for trade with Afghanistan, which the Afghan government wants to become standard ports.

Ashraf Ghani added: “We are creating dry ports to eight locations in Afghanistan… the finance development cooperation of the United States is now willing and ready to work with us to offer guarantees.”

 In the past, Afghans relied heavily on the Pakistani port of Karachi for trade with the world. With the opening of Iran’s Chabahar port and the opening of new transit routes through Central Asian countries, Afghanistan has been able to reduce its reliance on the port of Karachi in recent years

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Parliament approves amended Coronavirus budget

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(Last Updated On: July 1, 2020)

The Lower House of the Afghan parliament approved on Wednesday the extra budget for the Coronavirus crisis in the country.

The lawmakers, however, had rejected the budget but the government resent the draft to the House after bringing some minor changes in it.

The Finance and Budget Commission of the parliament says the national budget was 428 billion AFN, but the government has added another 21 billion AFN. 

“In the first amend draft 428.380 billion AFN included all the budget. But the budget raised to 449 billion AFN of which 30 billion is allocated to contain the coronavirus, “Abdul Rauf Anami, a member of the commission said.

Meanwhile, joint parliamentary commissions rejected the government’s amended draft to increase operative funds and transfer funds from many development projects to the Coronavirus budget.

“In areas where additional money was offered, we rejected it, for example, a 1.7 billion AFN for operational units, transferring three hundred and fifty million AFN to the provinces,” said Mir Afghan Safi, head of the Finance and Budget Commission. “It was difficult to monitor, and all the commissions have accepted the amendment of the parliament and it is an agreement.”

Finally, the House of Representatives put the budget document to fight the coronavirus on a vote by adding the amendments of the commissions of the House.

Mir Rahman Rahmani, Speaker of the House of Representatives, said: “The government’s proposed amendments to fight the coronavirus and the accidental amendments of the commissions are to be put on vote… It is approved with a majority of for votes and five against votes.”

However, members of the House of Representatives emphasize that they will closely monitor how the budget would be utilized to fight the coronavirus, as any corruption in this regard could lead to people’s death.

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