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IEA commits to supporting journalists: officials

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(Last Updated On: March 18, 2023)

The Ministry of Information and Culture (MoIC) says the Islamic Emirate is committed to supporting journalists and that efforts have already begun to remove challenges the obstacles towards journalists in the country.

On the occasion of the 27th of Hoot (17 March) which is “National Day of Journalists in Afghanistan” Hayatullah Mohajer Farahi, deputy minister of publications of the Ministry of Information and Culture said that regulations on access to information have been drawn up and sent to the office of the leader of the Islamic Emirate for approval and ratification.

However, a number of journalists criticize the lack of timely access to information by government spokesmen and the imposition of restrictions, and they also demand the follow-up of cases of violence against journalists.

“Our request to the Islamic Emirate is to deal legally with the perpetrators of violence against journalists,” said Mohebullah Barakzai, a journalist.

“Journalists still face serious challenges, the lack of access to information and the inappropriate treatment of security forces towards journalists,” said another journalist.

“Although the spokesmen of some ministries cooperate with reporters, some others still do not provide information to reporters in a timely manner.”

Meanwhile, dozens of journalists are currently unemployed and facing financial problems due to so many media outlets having to close down due to the economic crisis.

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Minister Nadeem stresses importance of modern sciences

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(Last Updated On: March 25, 2023)

Higher Education Minister Neda Mohammad Nadeem on Saturday said that strengthening of modern sciences is one of the obligations of the Islamic system, and emphasized that the Islamic Emirate has fulfilled its duties in this regard.

Speaking at a ceremony to inaugurate the new academic year at the Technical and Vocational Education and Training Authority, Nadeem said: “Emir of Muslims is obliged to present professional teachers to the society who can meet the worldly needs of the people.”

He also assured people they would provide transparent and equal educational services to all students and emphasized that they are working to improve the country’s education system.

“A person who enters the educational system and then graduates, succeeds based on merit. Connection, money and pressure do not work here. Everyone gets a post based on their skills,” the minister said.

Meanwhile, Gholam Haider Shahamat, head of the Technical and Vocational Education and Training Authority, said they will soon sign a memorandum of understanding to cooperate with the National Development Authority.

The new academic year has started across Afghanistan, but girls are still barred from going to secondary schools and universities.

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300 homes, 1,500 acres of farmland destroyed in Balkh flood

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(Last Updated On: March 25, 2023)

Rainstorms and flash floods have destroyed residential houses and farmlands in northern Afghanistan, provincial police spokesman Mohammad Asif Waziri said on Friday.

Heavy rains triggered destructive floods on Thursday evening, which partially damaged or utterly destroyed more than 300 houses and 3,000 acres of farmlands in Zari district of the northern Balkh province and its vicinity, Waziri told reporters, Xinhua news agency reported.

The floods also killed numerous cattle in Zari district and adjoining areas, the official said.

There is no report of casualties, the official said, adding that rescue teams have been sent to affected areas to help the affected families.

Heavy floods have also cut off the link between Qalat, capital of Zabul province, to seven districts in Afghanistan southern region.

Afghanistan’s meteorological department has reportedly predicted more rains and floods in 20 out of the country’s 34 provinces in the coming days.

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Muttaqi: Afghanistan is ready to work with the US, but sanctions must go

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(Last Updated On: March 24, 2023)

Amir Khan Muttaqi, foreign minister of the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan (IEA), has once again asked the world to lift sanctions imposed on the country and expressed willingness to work with all nations, including the US.

In an article published in Al Jazeera, Muttaqi, said that not only has the war come to an end but Afghanistan is being administered by an independent, powerful, united, central and responsible government. 

He said that a unique opportunity has emerged to embark on rapprochement between Afghanistan and the world.

“The conditions are ripe for Afghanistan to rise up as a responsible and independent member of the international community and to fulfil its responsibility in promoting global peace and security. The international community, on its part, should reciprocate by welcoming Afghanistan into its fold while paying respect to its independence and assisting it to stand on its feet. Our foreign policy will be based on a balanced and independent approach, that avoids entanglement in global and regional rivalries. We will pursue opportunities for shared interests and peaceful coexistence, based on the principle of equality and respect,” he wrote.

Muttaqi acknowledged the crisis in the country and blamed sanctions imposed by the US and other countries for it.

“The primary cause of the ongoing economic crisis is the imposition of sanctions and banking restrictions by the United States. This impedes and delays our efforts to address the humanitarian crisis,” Muttaqi wote.

“What moral and political justifications can the US have for imposing crippling sanctions on a war-torn nation?”

He added that over the past two decades, the Afghan economy “was made wholly dependent on foreign aid” and now with zero aid inflows, there was a need to “address the basic and fundamental needs of the Afghan people”.

He also reminded the US and other countries that sanctions and pressures do not resolve differences. “There is a need for the international community to establish political and economic relations with the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan while respecting its sovereignty and territorial integrity.”

Muttaqi warned that if sanctions result in another failed government in Afghanistan, it would result in grave consequences not only for the country but the whole world.

“Such a scenario will be accompanied by a great human tragedy that will not be limited to Afghanistan, but rather usher in new and unforeseen security, refugee, economic, health and other challenges for our neighbours, the region and the world.”

According to Muttaqi, the cultural sensibilities of Afghanistan require a “cautious approach.”

“As for our internal affairs, which have at times been misconceived or misconstrued, there remains the need to dispel misinformation and depict an accurate picture of the values and needs of Afghanistan. The religious and cultural sensibilities of our society require a cautious approach. Any government that has not maintained the proper equilibrium, pertaining to such sensibilities, has ultimately faced serious difficulties. This is a lesson that our recent history has emphasised over and over again,” Muttaqi wrote.

On the government’s achievements, the minister claimed that action has been taken to ensure that Afghanistan soil was not used against other countries while the cultivation of drugs has been banned.

“We celebrate, and take pride, in our diversity and rich history. We don’t believe in imposing the majority’s will on a minority. In our view, every citizen of the country is an inseparable part of the collective whole.”

Muttaqi acknowledged that there remain “challenges and shortcomings” and sought time, resources and cooperation to address those issues. “Virtually all countries of the world have problems of their own. Yet, we choose to assist and alleviate, rather than shun and exacerbate.”

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