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Killing of Ariana News anchor sparks widespread outcry

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(Last Updated On: May 18, 2022)

The High Council for National Reconciliation said on Saturday they were saddened to learn that Mina Khairi, a young and talented host on Ariana News, was killed in an explosion on Thursday night in Kabul.

Khairi’s mother was also killed in the explosion.

The HCNR said “a number of our defenseless compatriots were killed and some were injured.

“The criminal terrorists show the height of their terror and crime by targeting defenseless and civilian people.

“At a time when all the people of Afghanistan are hoping for peace and waiting for the peace talks to end and for the war and killing in the country to end, the creation of such a crime and terror is against the national and popular spirit,” the HCNR said.

The HCNR condemned the incident, and expressed its condolences to the families of the victims, especially the family of Mina Khairi, their colleagues at Ariana News and the media, and wished the injured a speedy recovery.

Distraught relatives, friends and colleagues of Khairi meanwhile paid their last respects to her on Saturday.

The funeral was held in Kabul for both mother and daughter.

The popular news anchor was killed in Pul-e-Sokhta in Kabul’s western area. She had been with Ariana News since 2017.

Other reactions:

UK and the US embassies also reacted to her death.

“This cowardly attack against Mina Khairi represents an attack on all Afghan society and its vital #mediafreedom, just one month after #WorldPressFreedomDay. We condemn her murder and once again call for the campaign of violence against journalists & media professionals to end,” UK embassy said in a tweet.

Chargé d’Affaires Ross Wilson said: “Another Afghan journalist killed in Kabul, one of four female media workers killed in Afghanistan this year alone. My sincere condolences to Mina Khairi’s family, friends, and colleagues during this troubling time. I urge quick action to #ProtectJournalists nationwide.”

The Afghan Journalists Safety Committee (AJSC ) also decried the attack and called for an investigation.

“AJSC is deeply saddened to hear Mina Khairi, TV presenter at Ariana News and her mother are among the victims of yesterday’s blast in district 6 of Kabul city. We strongly condemn the attack & call on the government to seriously investigate the case,” AJSC said.

Pakistan ambassador Mansoor Ahmad Khan also condemned the attack.

“Deeply saddened on the deaths of Mina Khairi Ariana TV presenter and her mother in the blasts in Kabul and all those who lost lives in these blasts. Condemn terrorism in all forms and manifestations,” Khan tweeted.

Reporters without Borders (RSF) also condemned Khairi’s killing and called on the ICC’s prosecutor to investigate the killings of #journalists in #Afghanistan.

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Thousands of Afghans protest against desecration of Quran in Sweden, Netherlands

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(Last Updated On: January 27, 2023)

Thousands of people took to the streets in different cities of Afghanistan on Friday to protest against the recent desecration of the Quran in Sweden and the Netherlands.

Chanting slogans against both the European countries, protesters called for the perpetrators of the acts to be punished.

“The Holy Quran is the book of brotherhood. This book never insults the sacred things of others. We want that such offensive acts should be prevented in the future,” said Ahmad Khan, a protester in Kabul.

Ismail, another protester in Kabul, said: “We ask Islamic countries to cut off their diplomatic relations with Sweden and the Netherlands until the perpetrators of insulting the Holy Quran are publicly punished.”

Some of the protesters said that they are ready to give their lives to defend their sacred things.

“We are ready to sacrifice our heads, property and children to the Quran,” Qutbuddin said.

In the northern province of Balkh, people protested by chanting slogans against acts of insult to the Quran. The protesters asked the international community and the Muslim world to prevent such acts.

“This crime is a repeated crime. Since countries are obliged to obey to the international laws, such crimes must be stopped,” said Mohammad Naeem, a protester in Balkh.

“Muslims have taught the enemies of Quran and Islam a lesson throughout history, and they will not allow anyone to insult their religion and Quran,” said Maulvi Qahir, a protester in Balkh.

In the province of Herat, protester changed “Death to Sweden and long live Islam.”

“These countries present themselves as friends, but these acts show that they are our enemies and are real terrorists. In international laws, insulting the sacred things is considered a crime. No one has the right to insult the sacred things of a country or a religion,” said Qasim, a protester in Herat.

“We ask the international community, the United Nations and human rights organizations to bring the perpetrators of insults to the Quran to justice as soon as possible. We respect the whole world and we expect that our religion will always be respected,” said Emal, a protester in Herat.

In the east of the country, the people of Nangarhar also took to the streets after Friday prayers to condemn the desecration of Quran.

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Turkmenistan and Afghanistan renew power supply contract

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(Last Updated On: January 27, 2023)

Afghanistan’s Minister of Energy and Water Affairs, Mullah Abdul Latif Mansoor, and the Executive Chairman of Afghanistan’s power utility company (DABS), Alhaji Maulawi Muhammad Hanif Hamza, visited Turkmenistan this week where they signed agreements for the supply of electricity and other joint initiatives.

According to the Afghan Ministry of Energy and Water Affairs, the extension of the electricity contract with Turkmenistan, the completion of the 500KV line project, the construction of Noor ul Jihad substation, and the establishment of necessary coordination for the implementation of the Turkmenistan-Afghanistan-Pakistan project were the focus of their trip.

Mansoor said that the electricity export agreement with Turkmenistan was extended for the year 2023 and also assurances were given by Turkmenistan regarding the implementation of the projects.

The ministry underlined that with the completion of the 500 KV line and the construction of Noor ul Jihad substation, the amount of electricity imported from Turkmenistan to Afghanistan will increase by 110 megawatts.

“With the implementation of the TAP project and the 500 kV line that passes through Afghanistan to Pakistan, the residents of many provinces of Afghanistan will benefit from electricity”, the ministry said.

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FM Muttaqi meets Norwegian Charge d’Affaires for Afghanistan

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(Last Updated On: January 27, 2023)

Norwegian Chargé d’Affaires for Afghanistan Paul Koloman Bkar called on Amir Khan Muttaqi, the foreign minister of the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan (IEA), in Kabul and discussed humanitarian aid, security, development cooperation and political issues, said Hafiz Zia Ahmad Takal, the deputy spokesman of the foreign ministry.

Mr. Bkar first expressed his regret over the explosion in front of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and expressed that his country is determined to work together with international partners through political interaction with Afghanistan considering the current authorities and governance of Afghanistan is a reality and the world should deal with it realistically.

FM Muttaqi said efforts should be made to bring the world and Afghanistan closer to each other, Norway has good experience in this work and can play a role. He added that positive measures of the new Afghan government should be appreciated and given a positive response.

“After decades, we have ensured global security, we have effectively fought against Daesh and drugs and we are committed so that all-round stability prevails in the country and no threat is perceived from Afghanistan,” said Muttaqi.

Minister Muttaqi said, as history has shown, using pressure options in Afghanistan is not useful and now we should move forward on the path of cooperation with each other.

Meanwhile, both sides discussed incomplete projects, education and training and a number of other issues that are suspended due to some obstacles.

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