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Govt says Taliban destroyed 260 office buildings in 106 districts

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(Last Updated On: July 15, 2021)

The chairman of the Independent Administrative Reform and Civil Service Commission (IARCSC) Nader Nadery said Thursday a study has found that the Taliban has destroyed or set fire to 260 government buildings in 106 districts in recent weeks. 

This comes amid heightened tension across the country as the Taliban continue to seize districts.

Addressing an event on Thursday, Nadery said the findings show that the Taliban has plundered equipment and property belonging to public institutions.

“Taliban have proposed a three month ceasefire but in return they want the release their 7,000 prisoners and the removal of their leaders’ names from the UN blacklist, which is a heavy demand by them,” Nadery said. 

The survey findings are as follows: 

1. Plunder of equipment and property of public institutions

“In 82 districts the rate of equipment looted was reported to be 100% in 18 districts; between 70% and 90% in 14 districts; from 50% to 60% and in 35 districts up to 50%.”

2. Displacement of thousands of public service workers

“Nearly 4,000 public service workers have been affected by the Taliban’s takeover of the districts, and many have fled their areas to provincial capitals due to poor security conditions and high threats against them.”

3. Deprivation of basic government services to millions of citizens

“More than 13 million Afghans have been deprived of basic government services and development projects such as rebuilding water supply networks, roads, retaining walls, building schools, building bridges, digging wells, building hospitals, building cold storages and other projects.”

4. 50,000 civil servants affected

“More than 50,000 civil servants are … unable to attend their duties.

5. In the Taliban-controlled districts of Takhar province alone, 112 development projects planned for this year have been completely stopped.

6. Restrictions on women health care providers

In a small number of the districts under their control, the Taliban have allowed female employees working in the health service sector to travel to work on condition they wear a full hijab and have a legal Mahram (relative to accompany them). 

7. In the Taliban-controlled districts of Paktia province, only women working as midwives have been allowed to continue working and need to wear a full hijab and have a Mahram.

Nadery said attacking and injuring civilians and civilian facilities is considered a war crime under international humanitarian law. 

A cessation of hostilities and a political agreement for a common future for all Afghans is the way to prevent these crimes from continuing, he said. The continuation of the war makes the Afghans losers. 

On the other hand, Zabihullah Mujahid, a spokesman for the Taliban, said in response to Nadery’s remarks that the claims were untrue. 

Mujahid said in a voice message to the media that the Taliban was providing better security than government.

This comes after a substantial spike in violence has been recorded across the country since the US and NATO troops started withdrawing. 

In the past few weeks, the Taliban has seized dozens of districts, which has resulted in hundreds of thousands of Afghans fleeing their homes. 

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IEA defense minister leaves Kabul for UAE

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(Last Updated On: December 3, 2022)

The Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan’s (IEA) Ministry of Defense says Mawlavi Mohammad Yaqoob left Kabul for United Arab Emirates on Saturday.

In a series of tweets on Saturday, MoD said the defense minister left Kabul as head of delegation for the United Arab Emirates.

The defense ministry stated that the purpose of the trip is to meet with the leaders of the UAE and Afghans based in the country and to strengthen the relations of the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan with the Gulf countries.

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IEA lays foundation stone for complex marking Khost prisoner-swap site

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(Last Updated On: December 3, 2022)

The Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan (IEA) is set to build a complex in the area where US Army Sergeant Bowe Bergdahl was released in 2014 in exchange for five IEA members held in Guantanamo prison.

Interior Minister Sirajuddin Haqqani, who laid the foundation stone of the complex in Khost province, said that the complex will include a religious seminary, a school, a clinic and a freedom monument.

“Today is a very happy day for us. God has liberated our country… it is very fortunate that we are laying the foundation for a freedom monument here… release of the five prisoners was a source of happiness for Afghanistan,” Haqqani said.

Abdulhaq Wasiq, current head of intelligence, Mohammad Fazil Mazloom, deputy defense minister, Noorullah Noori, minister of frontiers and tribal affairs, Khairullah Khairkhwa, minister of information and culture, and Mohammad Nabi Omari, deputy minister of interior were released in a 2014 deal between the Obama administration and the IEA to free US soldier Bergdahl.

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US envoy stresses importance of Japan’s contributions to Afghanistan

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(Last Updated On: December 3, 2022)

US special envoy for Afghanistan, Thomas West, has held talks with Japanese officials on humanitarian needs, human rights and political dialogue during his two-day visit to the country.

“Japan has been a friend of the Afghan people and our partner there for over 20 yrs, and we deeply appreciate Japan’s active diplomacy and continued generosity today,” West said on Twitter on Saturday.

“We are always stronger, on every challenge, when we act together with allies. True in Afghanistan – we’ll continue to need Japan’s expertise and diverse contributions,” West said.

The envoy also said that he got “sage advice” from Tadamichi Yamamoto, a Japanese who served as UN envoy for Afghanistan during 2016-2020.

He also discussed the economic strategy with Japan International Cooperation Agency.

West’s Japan visit was part of his tour to the region that includes India and the United Arab Emirates.

West is expected to consult with partners and Afghans regarding the humanitarian and economic crises in Afghanistan, protection of Afghans’ rights, and shared security concerns, according to a statement from the US State Department.

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