26 October 2020

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Kabul (BNA) President Mohammad Ashraf Ghani met yesterday with US Defense Secretary Jim Mattis, heading a US high-ranking delegation.

In the meeting held at presidential palace, both sides discussed security situation in Afghanistan and region, war on terror and cooperation between the two countries in various fields.

First, US Defense Secretary extended his country’s condolence to President Ghani and the people of Afghanistan over terrorist attacks in 209th Shaheen corps, saying that United States was committed to continued cooperation with Afghanistan and the cowardly attack on ANA soldiers while praying in mosque was a sign of weakness and lack of terrorists’ adherence to humanity.

“Our mission has not ended so far in Afghanistan and they will keep standing beside the government and people Afghanistan and in consideration to importance of Afghanistan we have dispatched our experienced advisors to the country”, Mattis said, adding that his country’s presence in Afghanistan was for a good aim and we should coordinate our diplomacy and military affairs with each other.

US Defense Secretary further said, “We perceive your problems, but steps taken regarding to reforms, good governance and counter corruption are touchable.”

Afterwards, President Mohammad Ashraf Ghani while praising the US government for its continued support and cooperation with Afghanistan recalled three key challenges as terrorism, narcotics and corruption, asserting that war in Afghanistan was not a civil war, but Afghan defense and security forces were in front line for war on international terrorism.  He asserted that terrorists wanted to use Afghanistan soil against others and casualties of Taliban and other terrorist groups have increased during the past six months comparing to the past 15 years.

The country’s President told US defense secretary to convey his good wishes to President Donald Trump.

Mohammad Asharaf Ghani said bringing reforms and counter corruption were their responsibility and commitment, adding that we should accept terrorism as common threat to the world and asked for joint counter terrorism effort.

Kabul (BNA)  President Mohammad Ashraf Ghani met princes Zahra Agha Khan, international in charge of the Agha Khan Foundation on education and cultural affairs here yesterday, a presidential statement said.

According to the statement, besides welcoming the princess and the accompanying delegation, the president praised Agha Khan Foundation’s development programs, in particular constructions of Dar-ul-Aman palace, Eidgh mosque, Kabul River and Chehelstoon garden.

Meanwhile thanking the president for warm hospitality, Princess Zahra assured of Agha Khan Foundation’s continued support of Afghanistan.

According to another report, Chief Executive of Islamic Republic of Afghanistan, Dr. Abdullah Abdullah met princess Zahra Agha Khan and her accompanying delegation here yesterday at Sapidar Palace, a statement said.

According to Chief Executive Press Office, Dr. Abdullah welcomed princess Zahra Agha Khan to Afghanistan, thanking His Majesty Karim Agha Khan’s cooperation, asking for further bolstering of such cooperation with Afghanistan.

Dr. Abdullah also hinted to crucial role of Agha Khan Foundation in different spheres of culture, social and economic in the country, praising Agha Khan Foundation’s development programs in Afghanistan.

Princess Zahra conveyed His Majesty Karim Agha Khan’s greeting to Chief Executive, promising to continue Agha Khan Foundations’ program for reconstruction and development of Afghanistan.

Pointing to international programs of Agha Khan Foundation in different fields of health, education, culture and social affairs, princess Zahra said she was glad to see closely the foundation’s development programs for Afghanistan. 

Tuesday, 25 April 2017 13:12

Blasts Prohibited in Nangarhar

Jalalabad (BNA) a series of blasts were prevented in Nangarhar province.

Security officials discovered and neutralized mines which was planted in Achen, Kot, Ghanikhail and Chaparhar districts.

Selab army corps commander told BNA, with planting of the mines, Taliban wanted to organize series of deadly events to civilians, but not succeeded to their evil goals.

He said efforts are underway to identify and arrest the culprits of the failed events.

Tuesday, 25 April 2017 13:10

Six Suicide Bombers Killed in Farah

Farah (BNA) six suicide bombers were killed by security forces in Farah province.

The bombers were targeted while planting mines in Balabalok highway and killed.

A security commander of Farah province told BNA, six suicide bombers were killed in the clash.

According to another report, the security forces succeeded to discover three weapons caches of Taliban in Farah province.

The caches have been discovered in Balabalok district and suburb of Farha city.

A security source of Farah province said the caches were kept in Taliban hideouts and several weapons were seized from the caches.

Jalalabad (BNA)  20 Daesh loyalists were killed in latest conflicts in Nangarhar province last night.

The fighters were targeted by security troops in Kot, Hasakamena and Achen districts of the province.

Ataullah Khogyani spokesman for Nangarhar governor said BNA, in the raids, 20 Daesh fighters were lost their lives.

It is said that there were no any harm and losses incurred to security troops and residents in the conflicts.

According to another report, three weapon caches of Daesh fighters were also discovered in the province.

A security source of Nangarhar province said that several heavy and light weapons and quantity of explosives were also seized from the caches.  

Thursday, 18 August 2016 11:33

Afghan media now in Taliban crosshairs

After shedding blood of thousands of civilians, politicians, policemen and soldiers, the Taliban has waged war against Afghan media.

The violent group has declared around 20 independent media organizations as party to the conflict and “mouthpiece of foreigners”.

The Taliban had not only issued a fatwa (religious verdict) and warnings to the free media outlets but has also prepared a media hit-list. Attacks on Pajhwok Afghan News’ bureau in Nangarhar and TOLO TV staffers marked the beginning of a declared war against free media.

In March 2016, the Taliban issued a warning statement to twenty media outlets. The militant group posted logos of the newspapers, radio and news channels that are on the hit-list. The statement is available on the Taliban’s website ((http://alemara1.org/?p=45152). Logos of the print and electronic media organizations—target of Taliban ire—were put together so the employees and managers of these organizations would know that they are on the hit-list.

TOLONews, TOLO TV, News One, Lamar, ATV, Shamshad, Saba, Outlook Afghanistan, Daily Afghanistan, Afghanistan Times, Salam Watandar, and Ariana News are among those media organizations that are in the Taliban crosshairs.


The lengthy warning message accuses these media organizations of siding with the NATO member states, “disbelievers”, particularly the United States and inciting people against Taliban.

“They [media outlets in the list] are serving the donors wholeheartedly. These foreign-funded media organizations are working against the national interests. They have no choice but consider it a responsibility. Some media and journalists who call themselves independent are deliberately acting as spokesmen for the invaders [NATO member states]. These media outlets and journalists never miss any opportunity to make propaganda against the mujahideen [holy worriers], despite Taliban have several times humbly requested them to take in account the journalistic principles,” the Taliban accused.

The militant group in its threat message said the independent media organizations are involved in propaganda against the Taliban aimed at putting the lid on the defeat of the United States and its NATO allies.

The Taliban said that such propaganda “brought death to the TOLO TV”.  Warning the targeted media of series consequences for not doing what the group says, the Taliban said, “These media organizations must know that through such propaganda neither they can revenge nor cover the defeat of their lords [US and its allies] that they have suffered in the battle [against the Taliban] nor they can bring down morale of the mujahideen [Taliban fighters].”

To scare the journalists, the militant group gave attack on the TOLO TV staffers as a reference. On January 20, 2016, a Taliban suicide bomber targeted a mini-bus carrying employees of TOLO TV. At least seven staff members of the TOLO TV were killed and 26 others were injured. The militant group warned the TV channel and other media outlets in October 2015 of dire consequences. According to a report published by Afghanistan Times, almost 99 percent of Afghan media outlets are in the Taliban’s hit-list.

“The militant group’s so-called military commission has recently included all those print and electronic media organizations that have highlighted and condemned brutality of the Taliban through editorials, articles, news, feature and analytical reports. The group in a report on its website (www.shahamat-english.com) said: “There are very few in this media field who have actually fulfilled their true ethical duty, why? because most have only worked for the goals of the invaders.” The group warned to deal with the targeted media outlets in the same way as they are doing with foreign troops and Afghan forces,” the newspaper reported.

This has put the journalists and independent analysts in a difficult situation.

In November 2015, a prominent analyst and former diplomat, Ahmad Saeedi, was attacked close to the diplomatic oasis. He sustained bullet injuries, but luckily survived. However, the attack on him in Shahr-i-Naw area proves how difficult situation the journalists and analysts are facing. They are attacked in the heart of the capital city, Kabul. This was not the first incident.

Unidentified gunmen—yet to be traced by the security agencies—attacked Jaweed Kohistani’s house and Toofan Waziri. Both are well-known analysts.

This year in February, journalists were shot in Baghlan province. In like most of cases, here the attackers were also called ‘unknown’. Ibrahim, one of the injured journalists, sustained a gunshot wound to his head. He was unable to talk.

Seven staffers of the TOLO TV were killed in January this year when the Taliban dispatched a suicide bomber to target the TV channel. Driving an explosive-laden vehicle, the suicide bomber hit the minibus, carrying employees of the TOLO TV. The incident has shocked the journalists across the globe. It was not only attack on freedom of speech by a group known to all but also in a city where chiefs of all security agencies live including the commander-in-chief of the armed forces.

Not only news reporters and analysts are threatened but the terrorists have also warned the editors of prominent media outlets of serious consequences.

The editor-in-chief of Afghanistan Times, Abdul Saboor Sarir, was threatened several times. The 29-year old editor has received warning letters and calls from the militant groups. Taliban has several times dropped threat letters into his house.

According to report of the Planning and Operations Department of Police, the militants asked Mr. Sarir to change his newspaper’s policy towards them. In other words the insurgents wanted to use his paper as a propaganda channel.

It was not for the first time that he had contacted police. Before that he also told the police about warnings that he received. The newspaper has published several reports against different terrorist organizations including Daesh, Taliban and Haqqani Network. The militants call him a “staunch supporter” of the US and its western allies. He asked the relevant authorities to provide foolproof security to the media persons and organizations.

Nai, an organization supporting freedom of speech in Afghanistan, has termed January 2016 as one of the bloodiest months for local journalists and media organizations over the past sixteen years. According to Nai at least eight journalists were killed and over 20 others were injured in January.

There is no denying that journalists are working in a difficult situation. They are feeling insecure because they know that writ of the government is weak. Their families also live in fear. If the government failed to provide security, many journalists will lose their lives. 

Saturday, April 05, 2014
Kabul (BNA) President Hamid Karzai was grieved by an incident in which an Associated Press photographer was shot dead and a reporter wounded in Afghanistan's province of Khost. The President has ordered a full investigation into the incident.
The two female journalists, Anja Niedringhaus, the photographer and Kathy Gannon, the reporter were shot at this morning in Tanai district as they had travelled to the province to cover Afghanistan's Presidential and Provincial Council Elections set for Saturday.
President Karzai instructed this morning the Interior Minister and the provincial governor to arrange for an immediate transfer of the wounded journalist and to provide her with the best medical care possible.
The President expresses his condolences to Anja's family and friends and wishes a quick recovery for the wounded reporter.

Wednesday, March 12, 2014
Kabul (BNA) The Deputy for Publication for the Ministry of Information and Culture, Simin Hassanzada described the late Vice President Marshal Mohammad Qasim Fahim as a prominent leader of the country, saying his services and sacrifices in defending the country’s independence, the religious values and the nation will last forever in the history of Afghanistan.
In her message, she stated that Fahim was one of the honest sons of this land and the people of Afghanistan have been deeply saddened with his death which is an irreparable great loss for the nation. In her remarks with BNA, Hassanzada described the late Marshal as symbol of Jihad and resistance, saying, “The people of Afghanistan should safeguard the achievement of the symbol of Jihad and resistance.” The new and future generations of the country should be encouraged to follow the foot print of the late Marshal Fahim.
She also noted that the ministry for information and culture in compliance with the presidential decree has asked all the government and non-government media outlets to adjust their programs in accordance with the national mourning spirit and so far all the media outlets by airing and publishing commentaries, articles and arranging roundtables have properly covered the death of the late Marshal.

Wednesday, 12 March 2014 07:25

Reactions On Marshal Fahim’s Death

Wednesday, March 12, 2014
Kabul (BNA) The untimely death of First-Vice President and the country’s only Marshal, Mohammad Qasim Fahim had followed different reactions at home and abroad, according to Bakhtar News Agency.
The US ambassador to Kabul said Marshal Fahim, Afghanistan’s First Vice-President had played key role in shaping Hamid Karzai led government.
“Marshal Fahim was a leader in Afghanistan under both war and peace conditions and had played vital role in forming a modern government in the country.”
Indian Prime Minister, Manmohan Singh in a message called Marshal Fahim a brave and fearless military commander, whose contribution to Afghanistan’s stabilization and reconstruction after over three decades of war and conflict would always be remembered.
“Marshal Fahim was also a close friend of India. We shall never forget his personal contribution to nurturing and strengthening the India Afghanistan strategic partnership”, the message said quoting Singh.
Pakistani leaders also expressed sympathy with government and people of Afghanistan on the country’s First Vice-President Marshal Mohammad Qasim Fahim’s death.
British ambassador to Kabul also said he strongly saddened when learnt about the death of Marshal Fahim, Afghanistan’s first vice-president.
He described Marshal Fahim a great personality in Afghanistan modern history.
The United Nations Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA-A) also condoled Marshal Fahim’s death and described him, a UN trusted partner. “The Un family joins the government and people of Afghanistan in mourning the loss of Marshal Fahim”, said UN Secretary-General’s Special Representative for Afghanistan, Jan Kubis.  Marshal Fahim died of heart attack in 56 year of his age, two days ago.

Wednesday, March 12, 2014
Kabul (BNA) Hundreds of thousands of Afghan citizens yesterday held funeral prayer in absence to the first vice-president of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan.
In the funeral prayer ceremonies held in 33 provinces, hundreds of thousands of Afghans including local officials, ulamas, students and common people participated.
The participants in the ceremonies while pointing out related to works of Marshal Fahim during Jihad and resistance against USSR and terrorism prayed for his soul.
Meanwhile, local officials considered death of Marshal Mohammad Qasim Fahim as big loss, asking the people for keeping unity in the country.
Marshal Mohammad Qasim Fahim, the first vice president of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan passed away Sunday morning due to hear attack.
Marshal Fahim was buried in a ceremony attended by hundreds thousands of people including high-ranking government officials in Kabul.

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