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Khalilzad starts new tour for “practical next steps” in Afghan peace

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(Last Updated On: June 6, 2020)

US Special Representative for Afghanistan Reconciliation Zalmay Khalilzad has started a new trip to Qatar, Pakistan, and Afghanistan on the Afghan peace process.

The US Department of State said in a statement that Khalilzad left Washington on June 5 for travel to Doha, Islamabad, and Kabul.

“The primary focus of Ambassador Khalilzad’s trip is to obtain agreement between the Afghan parties on the practical next steps necessary for a smooth start to intra-Afghan negotiations,” the statement said.

In his last stop in Kabul, Khalilzad would review the implementation of all commitments in the US-Taliban agreement and with all parties as well as the US-Afghanistan Joint Declaration, “specifically reduced violence and prisoner releases.”

It comes as the US forces conducted two airstrikes on June 4 against the Taliban militants to disrupt coordinated attacks on the Afghan National Security and Defence Forces’ checkpoints, Col. Sonny Leggett, a USFOR-A spokesman said in a tweet.

“Overnight, USFOR-A conducted an airstrike against 25 armed Taliban fighters executing a coordinated attack on an ANDSF checkpoint in Farah Province. This afternoon, USFOR-A conducted a strike on Taliban fighters attacking an ANDSF checkpoint in Kandahar Province,” Leggett said.

He said that the attacks were the first US airstrikes against the militant group since the start of the Eid ceasefire.

In accordance with the U.S.-Taliban agreement “We reiterate: All sides must reduce violence to allow the peace process to take hold. These were the 1st US airstrikes against TB since the start of the Eid ceasefire,” Leggett tweeted.

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Otunbayeva meets acting head of TVET in Kabul

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(Last Updated On: February 6, 2023)

The head of the United Nations Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA) emphasized the need for the inclusion of women and girls in vocational education on Monday in a meeting with Ghulam Haider Shahamat, acting head of Technical Vocational Education and Training (TVET).

In this meeting, Roza Otunbayeva said that vocational training is necessary for the economic development of Afghanistan and women and girls should be included.

Shahamat also expressed that technical and vocational education is effective for poverty alleviation and the growth of the country’s economy.

“The Technical Vocational Education and Training has 383 institutes and high schools all over Afghanistan, which operate in 250 districts and have 6850 staff,” said Shahamat.

Meanwhile, some experts say that Afghanistan needs to develop and create job opportunities for everyone, especially women and girls, and all international institutions play a constructive role for Afghanistan’s progress.

“All organizations which work under the framework of the United Nations can have positive roles in Afghanistan,” said Sarah Rahmani, women rights activist.

In this meeting, the head of the United Nations Cultural and Scientific Organization (UNESCO) was also present and emphasized on signing an agreement and creating a joint working group between both institutions.

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Afghanistan’s central bank to auction $17 million this week

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(Last Updated On: February 6, 2023)

Da Afghanistan Bank (DAB) has announced that it will auction $17 million on Wednesday as part of the efforts to stabilize the value of the Afghan currency against foreign currencies.

In a series of tweets on Monday, the Central Bank of Afghanistan asked qualified private banks and exchange companies to participate in the auction.

The winners of the auction are obliged to settle their accounts by the end of the day. As per the announcement, partial settlement of transactions is not allowed and the winners of the auction are obliged to transfer the payable amount to the central bank in cash within a certain time.

This is the second time in a week the central bank is auctioning US dollars to keep the value of Afghani stable.

The exchange rate was 90 AFN to the US dollar on Monday, February 6, 2023. The central bank sold $16 million on Sunday.

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Russia has no plans to close its embassy in Afghanistan, says envoy

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(Last Updated On: February 6, 2023)

Russia has no plans to close its diplomatic mission in Kabul, Director of the Russian Foreign Ministry’s Second Asian Department Zamir Kabulov told TASS on Monday.

Earlier, the Al-Arabiya TV channel reported that the authorities of several Arab and Western countries decided to close their diplomatic missions in Kabul because of security threats.

“Such thoughts have not even occurred,” Kabulov said, when asked whether Russia had such plans.

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