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Afghanistan water sources use by neighboring countries



(Last Updated On: October 25, 2022)

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The fears of a security breakdown in Afghanistan boil the larger possibility of an economic collapse. The country’s revenues seem abysmal, and the mismanagement of billions of dollars in aid has turned it entirely dependent on foreign donations and the presence of foreign troops.

With Afghanistan being largely an agricultural country, investment in the water sector should have been a natural priority for sustainable economic development. Yet, that is not the case. In the Afghanistan National Development Strategy, a framework for allocating international aid, water does not figure as a core development sector. Only 5 percent of development has gone into the water sector during the past decade.

The Ministry of Water and Energy says that Afghanistan water resources reaches to 57 billion cubic meters which the most parts of it use by neighboring countries.

Along the Afghanistan’s borders, villagers see their water flow into the neighboring countries without being able to use it for their own local fields. The scarcity of water has led to tensions between tribes and villages.

The ministry if water declared that the continuation of insecurity caused Afghanistan fails to effectively use its water from the construction of dams and other projects.

Officials in the ministry noted that the residents of the country must cooperate with the government in providing the security of water and electricity projects.

“The construction of dams takes long time and in some cases the works have not been done properly and on time. In addition, the main problem is insecurity that cause the projects face a deadlock,” Ali Ahmad Osmani, minister of Water and Energy said.

One of Afghanistan’s missed opportunities in the last decade was its failure to legislate a comprehensive water law. Existing law does not define water rights.

Land owners are also owners of water and landless farmers have no rights to water. The water management institutions are highly ineffective.

The lack of a database of natural resources and the limited ability of the government to collect data is another challenge and a major obstacle to planning and development.

Afghanistan has a population of 29 million, with 79% of the population living in rural areas. Only 27% of its population has access to improved water sources, and it goes down to 20% in rural areas, the lowest percentage in the world.

The numbers get even worse when you look at the percentage of people with access to improved sanitation facilities. With the numbers at 5% nationwide, and only 1% in rural areas, Afghanistan again ranks the worst in the world.

In Kabul, the capital, with a population of 6 million, 80% of the people lack access to safe drinking water, and 95% lack access to improved sanitation facilities.

Analysts say that reaching the safe driniking water is another challenges of Afghanistan residents which the people are suffering from.

Water is a collective issue for Afghanistan and its neighbors. Any solution should therefore be multinational. Nations involved in Afghanistan, in particular US-led forces, should avoid politicizing this problem as it is so vital to the future of Afghanistan and the region as a whole.

Investment decisions should be based not on efforts to deprive neighboring countries of water but on avoiding waste and improving utilization of resources.

Without regional cooperation, Afghanistan will be faced with deeper and unresolvable challenges that will be even more difficult to solve after most international forces leave in 2014.







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Afghan govt should be held accountable for its promises: Iran’s envoy



(Last Updated On: October 2, 2023)

Iran’s special envoy for Afghanistan Hassan Kazemi Qomi says Moscow format meeting was held at a time when Afghanistan is still an important issue in the foreign policy of the region and the world and that the Islamic Emirate is accountable for what it promises.

Speaking to Iranian media, Qomi said that Afghanistan’s neighboring countries have come to the conclusion to change the conditions in Afghanistan in a collective move in cooperation with the caretaker government’s officials.

“In the field of regional initiatives at the Moscow format meeting, the countries of the region came to the conclusion that they should create a collective movement to help each other, to help improve living and economic conditions, and to help support the political process,” said Qomi.

He, however, stated that the US and its allies destroyed Afghanistan’s economic infrastructure and security foundations during their presence in the country.

According to him, although the US has withdrawn from Afghanistan, supporting Daesh is one of Washington’s priorities.

“Even though the Americans left today, they are still doing their mischief, supporting Daesh is still on the agenda of the Americans,” he added.

The caretaker government of Afghanistan has tried to fight against drugs and root out terrorism, but the danger of terrorists and drug trafficking still exists for the country’s neighbors, he said.

Meanwhile, the Islamic Emirate says the neighboring countries, including Iran should not interfere in Afghanistan’s internal affairs.

“We ask all the neighboring countries not to interfere in the internal affairs of Afghanistan in any way, instead they should try to harmonize all their views with the Islamic Emirate,” said Zabihullah Mujahid, a spokesman for IEA.

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Paktika radio station back on air after 2-year break



(Last Updated On: October 2, 2023)

A local radio station, Milma, in Paktika province has resumed operations after a two-year break, the radio officials said.

The radio officials said they took this decision at the request of their audience, adding that they will expand their broadcasting coverage to other provinces as well.

Milma radio reportedly had broadcasts for the southeastern provinces in the previous government.

Meanwhile, many media outlets have ceased operations due to economic problems over the last two years.

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Pakistan police detain 800 Afghan refugees in Islamabad suburbs



(Last Updated On: October 2, 2023)

Pakistan police have detained 800 Afghan refugees in the suburbs of Islamabad, out of which 375 face deportation due to a lack of proper documentation.

“Islamabad police launched a search operation in Bara Kahu, Trinol, Mahar Abadian, Golra and Shams Colony and arrested 800 Afghan nationals,” police said.

“Four hundred Afghan nationals were later released on producing the proof of residence,” officials said. “375 other Afghan nationals had no identity papers, while 25 remaining Afghans have been detained till verification of their identity documents,” police further said.

“Lists of Afghans were compiled on the basis of secret information before the operation,” police said.

“Several criminal Afghan residents have also been pointed out and the operation will further step up in coming days,” officials said. Police said that the authorities have decided to deport 375 arrested Afghan nationals from Pakistan.

According to a report by the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), the number of Afghan nationals residing in Pakistan has surged to 3.7 million as of June this year, with a mere 1.3 million of them officially registered with the authorities. Approximately 775,000 unregistered Afghans are currently residing in the country.

As per Pakistan media outlets, a major 68.8 percent of Afghan citizens in Pakistan have settled in urban or semi-urban areas, while the remaining 31.2 percent are disturbed across 54 different regions including villages.

The Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan (IEA) considers the detention and alleged torture of Afghan immigrants in Pakistan to be against international standards and says that it has discussed this issue with Pakistani authorities many times through the Afghan embassy in Pakistan, and that it has been emphasized that Afghan immigrants in the country must be treated according to international laws.

At the same time, the Ministry of Refugees and Returnees says that to solve this problem, they are in contact with the Pakistani authorities to stop the process of arresting migrants and release the imprisoned Afghans.

Experts say that currently immigrants in Pakistan are facing many problems and challenges, and to solve these challenges, there is a need for diplomatic talks between Kabul and Islamabad based on international migration laws.

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