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Uzbekistan hoping to engage with IEA without alienating the West

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(Last Updated On: May 6, 2022)

Uzbekistan has emerged as a key interlocutor with the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan (IEA), engaging with Kabul on a wide range of issues but without officially recognizing the new government.

In doing so, it has enabled Uzbekistan to explore new opportunities for economic cooperation with Afghanistan without upsetting the international community, VOA reported Friday.

Ismatulla Irgashev, special representative to Uzbek President Shavkat Mirziyoyev, told VOA in an interview that his government is “working closely” with the IEA.

“We have long established solid contacts, talk regularly, [and] discuss cooperation,” he said.

Uzbekistan sees the IEA “as a reality that must be accepted,” he said.

“Imagine what happens if we don’t engage. … More conflict, another civil war, more blood, poverty, suffering, threats to the neighbors and the international community,” he stated.

Reflecting on President Mirziyoyev’s description of Afghanistan as an integral part of Central Asia, Irgashev said, “We see a common future with immense common interests, no matter who is in power there.”

Uzbekistan has meanwhile become a key hub for the delivery of humanitarian aid to Afghanistan, a move acknowledged by US Secretary of State Antony Blinken in March.

Mirziyoyev recently dispatched a delegation to Washington, urging more assistance to Afghanistan. Irgashev claimed Tashkent has persuaded the European Union to return diplomats to Kabul and hopes the US will ultimately take similar steps, VOA reported.

“The Taliban (IEA) don’t want to be isolated,” Irgashev said. “They want international recognition.”

Despite calling for greater engagement with the IEA, Irgashev said Tashkent is committed to moving ahead with formal recognition but only in tandem with the international community.

“We will not recognize them alone,” he said. “When it happens, we want a collective voice and stand.”

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Afghan students call on Muttaqi to help them return to India to complete their studies  

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(Last Updated On: July 4, 2022)

Dozens of Afghan students met with the acting Foreign Minister of the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan (IEA) Amir Khan Muttaqi on Monday in Kabul and shared their concerns with him, the foreign ministry said. 

Hafiz Zia Ahmad, Deputy Spokesman and Assistant Director of Public Relations at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, said dozens of students attended the meeting and asked the acting foreign minister to help them return to India to resume studies that were suspended due to the coronavirus pandemic. 

In his speech to the students, Muttaqi said they were an asset to the country and assured them that he would do his best to help them return to India to complete their studies.

“Mr. Muttaqi said that access to the problems of Afghan students is a priority and in this regard he will assign the relevant officials to share the demands of the students with the Indian Embassy and find solutions to the problems,” Ahmad tweeted.

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250 health care students graduate in Nimroz province 

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(Last Updated On: July 4, 2022)

Almost 250 young men and women graduated from a private health care institute in Nimroz province after studying midwifery, nursing or pharmacy. 

The graduates all received their diplomas on Monday, and according to officials from the institute, the students could possibly be employed by Nimroz public health department. 

Officials said health care centers in the city and districts of Nimroz province need more staff.

“We had almost 250 graduates, most of whom are women, and we had graduates in seven departments, which included midwifery, nursing, pharmacy, dental and laboratory,” said Juma Khan Nisar, head of the health institute in Nimroz. 

Graduates meanwhile pointed out that health care centers and clinics in the province are seriously short-staffed and have requested that employment opportunities are made available for them. 

“Today, I am very happy that I received my diploma, and my request to the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan is to provide a work environment for us,” said Fatima, a graduate. 

The Directorate of Public Health of Nimroz said that in the current situation, educated youths could provide good services to the people.

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Two killed, 20 wounded in Herat shootings

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(Last Updated On: July 4, 2022)

Two people were killed and 20 others were wounded when gunmen opened fire at two vehicles carrying civilian employees of the 207 Al-Farooq Army Corps in Herat on Monday, sources said.

The vehicles were on their way to the army corps headquarters when the shootings happened in the fourth and fifth districts of the provincial capital, also Herat.

A source in the 2017 Al-Farooq Army Corps said that the 20 injured in the shootings included two children and 18 employees of the corps.

According to police, one attacker was killed and two others fled following the incident.

Defense ministry’s spokesman also confirmed the death of two army personnel.

There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the attack.

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