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Senior IEC Officials in Dubai to Purchase Biometric Devices

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(Last Updated On: June 22, 2019)

Senior IEC Officials including the chairman of the commission and IEC Chief Secretariat have traveled to Dubai to purchase biometric devices for the upcoming presidential election.

Electoral observers on Saturday said that the senior officials have traveled instead of the technical staff of the IEC and in fact, it is an entertainment trip for them.

“Professional staff had to go instead of IEC officials. Unfortunately, their trip is for the purpose of entertainment,” said Yousuf Rashid, member of a Kabul-based electoral monitoring organization.

Meanwhile, the presidential candidates criticize the government for their lack of intention to maintain the election’s transparency.

“The absence of biometric devices benefits Ghani and therefore the government is not much interested in using the biometric devices in the upcoming presidential election,” said Faramarz Tamana, a presidential candidate.

For the first time, IEC used the biometric devices in the 2018 parliamentary elections which had several technical problems.

“There is not any professional person in entire the commission whom can be relied on for holding a transparent election. Therefore, it is better the government consumes the budget for purchasing the biometric devices,” said Najibullah Ahmadzai, a former official of IEC.

IEC denied sharing their viewpoint on this issue.

Based on the modified election ruled, IEC was supposed to use the new technology in the entire process of the elections.

However, this commission will use the biometric devices only in the polling day for identifying the voters.

The Afghan people will go for the presidential elections on September 28 while there are concerns about the election’s transparency and security across the country.

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Earthquake victims in Gayan district still in need of food and shelter

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(Last Updated On: June 25, 2022)

Hundreds of survivors of this week’s earthquake, who lost family members and their homes, are still in desperate need of help.

Sayed Bakhta, one of the survivors said that he has lost four family members and two others are hospitalized, adding that survivors are dealing with a lack of food and no shelter.

“We have no shelter here now, we don’t have food, all the victims are sitting outside without having shelter,” he said.

A number of Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan’s (IEA) officials who have visited Gayan district of Paktika say that almost 90 percent of residential areas have been destroyed.

“Almost 90 percent of residences are destroyed; only a few them are suitable for living, most of them are uninhabitable,” said Qalandar Ebad, acting minister of public health.

In the meantime, rugged roads have hampered relief efforts as Gayan victims grapple with a humanitarian crisis, but military helicopter try to deliver aid to the victims.

“According to the order of the Prime Minister, a meeting was held and according to that meeting, the ministries and donor organizations were instructed to come to the earthquake site as soon as possible and use all their facilities to save the people,” said Sharafuddin Muslim, deputy Minister of State for Disaster Management.

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121 children among those killed in Afghanistan earthquake: UNICEF

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(Last Updated On: June 25, 2022)

The United Nations children’s agency said on Friday 121 of those who were killed in the 6.1-magnitude earthquake in Afghanistan this week were children.

Mohamed Ayoya, UNICEF Representative to Afghanistan, said as of late Thursday night, at least 1,036 people were reported killed and more than 1,643 reported injured.

The toll included 121 deaths and 67 injuries among the children, according to the official.

He said that Bermal district in Paktika province has the highest number of casualties and that several thousand homes were destroyed or damaged.

“Children and adolescents are extremely vulnerable and at high-risk of family separation, emotional and psychological distress, abuse and exploitation, and other forms of violence,” Ayoya said.

“UNICEF, in coordination with UN agencies, partners, and the de facto authorities (led by the Ministry of Defence) is rapidly preparing a multi-sectoral response covering health, WASH, child protection, nutrition, education, social mobilization, and including a cash component,” Ayoya said.
“UNICEF will be conducting a rapid market assessment in the affected areas in the upcoming days. The assessment will inform the feasibility and appropriateness of cash as a response to support early recovery. UNICEF has already trained partners for beneficiary registration on the ground.”

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Pakistan dispatches second consignment of earthquake relief

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(Last Updated On: June 25, 2022)

Pakistan’s Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif on Friday dispatched eight trucks loaded with relief goods for earthquake victims in Afghanistan.

According to a statement issued by the Pakistan government, the consignment, arranged by the National Disaster Management Authority, has been handed over to Afghan authorities.

The consignment consists of family tents, tarpaulins, blankets and emergency medicines.

“Pakistan is committed to continue supply of relief goods to Afghan brethren,” the statement read.

This comes after Pakistan sent in earthquake aid on Wednesday, just hours after the 6.1 magnitude earthquake hit Afghanistan’s eastern provinces, killing over 1,000 people and destroying thousands of houses.

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