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For Export to Afghanistan Only

By Ahmad Masoud Ahmad Masoud, founder and director of CI member Consumers Rights and Services Organization  (CRSO), documents the state of consumer rights in Afghanistan via his monthly blog. In this latest instalment, he looks at the import of poor quality food and medicine from Pakistan. Many Pakistani products marketed in Afghanistan are marked either “For Export to Afghanistan” or “Not for sale in Pakis ...

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Australia must help fight for rights of Afghan women

By Nouria Salehi As a proud Australian, with strong connections to Afghanistan as the place of my birth, I read Hugh White's recent opinion piece on Afghanistan ("Afghanistan mission a total failure", February 5) with great interest. Every year since 2002, I have seen firsthand the struggle of ordinary Afghan women and men to rebuild their lives with great resolve. I share Professor White's concerns about t ...

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Pope Benedict in Shock Resignation

Vatican - The Pope is to resign at the end of this month in an entirely unexpected development, saying he is too old continue at the age of 85. He became Pope Benedict XVI in 2005 following John Paul II's death. Resignations from the papacy are not unknown, but this is the first in the modern era, which has been marked by pontiffs dying while in office. At 78, the former Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger was one of ...

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NATO’s Afghanistan Force Gets New U.S. Commander

Kabul - U.S. Marine General Joseph Dunford, expected to oversee the withdrawal of most foreign troops from Afghanistan by the end of next year, took control of the NATO-led mission on Sunday, in an elaborate ceremony which emphasised the country's sovereignty. Dunford takes over from U.S. Marine General John Allen, who ended a 19-month tour which was arguably one of the most difficult periods in the war, no ...

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No Pakistan Strategic Pact Unless Conditions Met: Rassoul

Kabul - The Afghan government will not sign a strategic pact with Islamabad unless it is clear that Pakistan poses no threat to Afghanistan, foreign minister Zalmai Rassoul said Sunday. A week after meeting Pakistani government and security officials in London, Rassoul said that the government will ensure that Afghanistan's conditions are very clear for the peace deal proposed at the trilateral summit betwe ...

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On The Road to Winning Counterinsurgency: Allen

KABUL - The outgoing NATO-led forces commander in Afghanistan, Gen John Allen, who handed over to Gen Joseph Dunford on Sunday, has said that the multinational troops had gone 'a long way' towards winning a counter-insurgency. Allen, set to be nominated as the alliance's supreme commander in Europe, told the BCC in an interview that counter-insurgencies took a while and it was difficult to put a dot on a ca ...

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Durand Line Not Discussed in London: Faizi

KABUL - The issue of the Durand Line had not be discussed between President Hamid Karzai and his Pakistani counterpart Asif Ali Zardari when they met in London last week, a presidential spokesman said on Sunday.  In London, Karzai held a series of meetings with Zardari at the trilateral talks hosted by the UK premier David Cameron. The two presidents agreed on various issues, including jointly working to re ...

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Ronaldo is Better Than Zidane, Says Sir Alex Ferguson

The Portugal star is facing the Red Devils for the first time since his £80m move, and his former Old Trafford boss thinks the 28-year-old is more talented than the French legend Manchester United boss Sir Alex Ferguson believes Real Madrid star Cristiano Ronaldo is more talented than Los Blancos legend Zinedine Zidane as the sides prepare to face each other in the last 16 of the Champions League. The Portu ...

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Economic Reforms and Investment

A country stuck in a perpetual state of war and violence needs a stronger and adamant economy more than others, for it is a strong economy that can take the country to the other side of the shore safely. However this is too unfortunate that illegal excavation of Afghanistan’s mines is rampant all over the country where local companies are involved in the grab. This is what the office of the Administrative A ...

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On the Greatness of Mothers!

This is early in the morning and everyone is asleep but in the silence of the early morning, one person is silently busy in preparing for the day to come. She is boiling the milk, frying eggs or doing other preparations. Soon everyone will get up and they will demand each and every thing ready immediately. Dad will be getting late to the office and children will have to hurry to their schools and colleges b ...

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Ahmadinejad defends Iran’s economic growth

Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad presented a report on progresses of the country before and after the 1979 Islamic Revolution, saying that before the Revolution, cement output was less than 7 million tons, but currently the figure is over 80 million tons. Moreover, 12 million tons of cement was exported within the current year, he added. According to the Mehr report, he said that before the Revolution, ...

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Elephant Spotting Robots in Africa

Researchers in Africa are trying out an Unmanned Aircraft System (UAS) for doing aerial surveys of large mammals. The drone chosen by the researchers was a Gatewing X100, a small, electric robot plane equipped with GPS, inertial measurement, and other sensors. Aerial surveys using traditional manned aircraft are very expensive to do, so this research could potentially result in new survey methods that will ...

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U.N., U.S. Condemn Attack on Iran Dissidents in Iraq

UNITED NATIONS - The U.N. secretary-general and the U.S. government condemned a deadly attack on an Iranian dissident camp in the Iraqi capital early on Saturday and urged Iraqi authorities to carry out a full investigation. "(Ban Ki-moon) strongly condemns the mortar attack today on Camp Liberty, the temporary transit facility near Baghdad for former residents of Camp Ashraf," the secretary-general's press ...

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Pakistan to Consult Afghanistan before Freeing Taliban

ISLAMABAD - Pakistan would give Afghanistan High Peace Council (HPC) a formal role in the release of remaining Taliban detainees in its custody through a new coordination mechanism being set up before they were freed, an official said. The agreement came at the London talks between Pakistani president Asif Ali Zardari and his Afghan counterpart Hamid Karzai in Chequers earlier this week. “We would send list ...

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Top U.S. Officer Says Sufficient Troops to Remain in Afghanistan

Washington - The top U.S. military officer said on Saturday he was confident enough U.S. troops will remain in Afghanistan after 2014 to accomplish the three-part mission agreed to by allies at last year's NATO summit in Chicago. Army General Martin Dempsey, chairman of the U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff, said he did not know whether President Barack Obama would announce the size of the post-2014 U.S. force for ...

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Bagram Jail Handover to Complete on Monday: MoD

KABUL - The US military would resume and complete the transfer of all inmates held at the controversial Bagram jail in central Parwan province to the Afghan control during a special ceremony slated for Monday, the Ministry of Defence (MoD) said on Saturday. The US military has suspended transfer of prisoners to the Afghan control at the facility over concern about torture and other human rights abuses. In a ...

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High Peace Council Welcomes Pakistan’s Taliban Release Plan

Kabul - The Afghan High Peace Council (HPC) on Saturday welcomed Pakistan's decision to give a formal role to the Afghan government in the release of the remaining Taliban prisoners amid concerns that those being released are returning to the insurgency. The Pakistani government will consult the Afghan High Peace Council through a new coordination mechanism being set up before setting more Taliban prisoners ...

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Pakistan’s Cooperation Usher Success for Peace

By signaling full support to the Afghan peace initiative, Pakistan is making a real gesture towards success of peace and negotiations with the Afghan Taliban. The country has taken bold steps, at least to this stage, to ensure full cooperation with the Afghan government in promoting the peace efforts and bringing the insurgents on negotiation table. A top Pakistani official announced that the country would ...

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Global Waste to Biofuel Market On the Up

Toledo, Ohio based waste to biofuel company, N-Viro International (OTCQB: NVIC) has reported a positive trend in the global alternative fuels market seeking to convert organic wastes into energy. The company said that its own N-Viro Fuel technology can convert wastewater treatment biosolids, animal manures and other suitable organic wastes into a valuable alternative to coal for energy production. According ...

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Dark Energy Hunter: 7 Questions for Nobel Prize Winner Saul Perlmutter

Dark energy is still mystifying, even to those that first discovered it. Saul Perlmutter, an astrophysicist at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory in California, won the 2011 Nobel Prize in physics for helping reveal that the expansion of the universe was accelerating (he shared the prize with Brian Schmidt of the Australian National University and Adam Riess of the Space Telescope Science Institute). Wha ...

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