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At least 1,000 pigeons die of starvation – Balkh



(Last Updated On: June 9, 2020)

Restrictions on movements and the ban on pilgrims entering Rawza have led to a shortage of food for pigeons, which have so far killed some 1,000 of them due to starvation.

The Coronavirus has not only challenged human life but has also threatened the life of pigeons in Rawza-e Mubarak – the shrine of Ali – in Mazar which due to the restrictions face lack of food.

Reportedly, nearly 1,000 pigeons have died of starvation so far, according to officials.

They emphasize that if the government does not help provide the pigeons with food, a large number of birds may vanish.

The pigeons – widely known as ‘the white doves’ that spreads the feeling of freedom – are the birds that in the sky of Mazar-e-Sharif catch the eyes of all the spectators and fly around the blue dome of the shrine of Ali.

Before the Coronavirus pandemic, thousands of people used to visit the shrine every day and, see the pigeons and would sprinkle them with seeds, the bird food.

For three months now, due to the spread of the Coronavirus, pilgrims have been barred from entering the holy spot. Thus, the white doves, who have become accustomed to the people, have faced a shortage of seeds – a serious threat to their survival.

A number of residents of Mazar-e-Sharif, who have been throwing three bags of wheat and corn to pigeons each day since the beginning of the pandemic and curfews, say that the situation will get worse if the government and relevant bodies do not help.

The exact number of pigeons is unknown, but officials say that there are more than 10,000 of them.

These birds, which were never far from human love and pilgrims’ special attention, feel alone now and their survival depends on human help.

Officials at the shrine say that they have shared the problem with the local government and the Ministry of Hajj and Religious Affairs, but they have not yet addressed the problem.


Two die of Congo fever in Balkh Central Hospital



(Last Updated On: May 28, 2023)

Two patients died of Congo fever in Abu Ali Sinai Balkhi Hospital in Mazar-e-Sharif city, health officials said.

Reports of an outbreak of Congo fever have been recorded in a number of provinces in the north of the country.

Najibullah Tawana, head of public health of Balkh, announced the death of two people in the meeting of sectorial coordination to prevent and reduce diseases between humans and animals in the province.

“Last week, 10 cases of Congo disease were confirmed in Faryab and Jawzjan and [patients were] transferred to Abu Ali Sina Balkhi seminary hospital, but two of them have died,” said Tawana.
Meanwhile, Mawolavi Mohammad Nasim Abid, the deputy mayor of Mazar-e-Sharif, said that they monitor the cleanliness and compliance of butchers every day, and that animals are slaughtered in slaughterhouses built by this department.

According to him; standard facilities have been established for the slaughter of chickens to prevent the spread of various diseases.

Mawolavi Zabihullah Noorani, the head of Balkh culture and information, also asked the media to inform the people about the prevention of this disease and inform them about the harm of this deadly disease.

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Mazar airport officials crack down on gold smuggling



(Last Updated On: April 11, 2023)

Officials in Balkh said on Monday that in the past 19 months they have prevented the smuggling of 50 kilograms of gold and $3 million US dollars at Maulana Jalaluddin Balkhi International Airport.

Abdul Ghaffar Farooqi, the deputy director of the airport, said that 1,500 domestic and international flights have taken place from the airport in the past 19 months.

“Since the IEA victory, 1,500 domestic and foreign flights have been made. Domestic flights to Kabul and Herat are carried out by Ariana and Kam Air,” Farooqi said.

According to the official, 20 employees of the airport have received professional training provided by Uzbekistan, which has brought the necessary facilities to the airport.

He added that after 20 years, the airport’s electricity system has been connected to the public grid, which is less expensive than generators.

Maulana Jalaluddin Balkhi International Airport is one of the largest airports in the country, and was built with the help of Germany and the United Arab Emirates.

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Six Daesh members killed in Balkh



(Last Updated On: April 4, 2023)

Balkh provincial police officials said Tuesday that six members of Daesh were killed in a clash with Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan (IEA) forces on Monday night.

Mohammad Asif Waziri, the spokesman of the Balkh Police Command, said that the clash started at about 9pm on Monday night in Nahri Shahi district and continued for about an hour.

Waziri added that the clash ended with the death of six members of the Daesh group. He said there were no casualties among the IEA forces.

This comes after recent operations against Daesh in the province.

This is the third operation of the Islamic Emirate against Daesh in Balkh province in the last two weeks.

The Islamic Emirate said last week that three prominent Daesh members, including the deputy leader of the group in Afghanistan, were killed in the province in an operation.

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