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IEC Fears Candidates May Rig Elections

Kabul- Presidential candidates will be brought to justice if they use their influence to get votes illegally, Independent Election Commission (IEC) spokesman Zia-ul-HaqAmarkhail warned on Monday. The comments come as election officials are looking to expedite the opening of the Electoral Complaints Commission's (ECC) provincial offices around the country in order to better field complaints against candidate ...

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Afghan Youth Await New Beginning

Kabul- For the many young Afghans who will vote in April, some for their first time, this year's elections mark an opportunity for a new start and a new future in Afghanistan. Talking with TOLOnews, Afghan youth discussed their opinions, aspirations and concerns heading into the elections. The Afghan population is majority youth, many of which have not known anything but conflict and oppression. But with fo ...

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Karzai in Turkey to Join Trilateral Summit

Kabul- President Hamid Karzai left Kabul for Ankara on Tuesday, leading a high-level delegation in a two-day summit focusing on Afghanistan, Turkey and Pakistan, Karzai's office said in a statement. Pakistan's Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif will also join the eighth trilateral summit between the three countries which will open on Wednesday. "On his three-day official visit, Karzai is also scheduled to separate ...

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US Commitment to Afghan Economic Transition

In a new generous aid package to Afghanistan, the United States has proposed about 300 million dollars to boost Afghanistan’s economy as the US-led forces are withdrawing from the country. According to the reports, the aid package tops to $300 million over five years for Afghanistan in an effort to stabilize the economy and strengthen Afghanistan’s financial institutions. The announcement of the aid package ...

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More Women in PaktiaLikely to Vote

GARDEZ - More women are likely to participate in the upcoming presidential and provincial council elections in southeastern Paktia province, realising importance of the ballot, local officials said on Monday. Women’s councils were active in 8 of the 13 districts of the province and thus females in far-flung districts would be able to vote, Women’s Affairs Director NasrinOryakhel told Pajhwok Afghan News. Sh ...

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Nepal Picks Koirala as New Pm, but Challenges Remain

Kathmandu - Nepal's parliament picked a social democrat as its new prime minister on Monday after a last-minute power-sharing deal ended a deadlock that had lasted since an election two months ago. SushilKoirala, the head of the centrist Nepali Congress party, was elected with support from the communist UML party, which holds the second largest number of seats in parliament. Nepal, wedged between India and ...

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China Punishes Graft-Busters for Beatings, Drunk Driving

Beijing - China's main anti-corruption watchdog has punished four of its own officials for incidents ranging from beatings to drunk driving, state media said on Monday, underscoring Beijing's challenge to stamp out deep-rooted graft and illegal activity. President Xi Jinping launched a crackdown on corruption soon after becoming head of the ruling Communist Party in late 2012, seeking to win back public con ...

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Rice Farmers Protest as Thai Government’s Funding Woes Mount

Bangkok - More than 1,000 farmers protested outside the Thai government's temporary headquarters on Monday over the state's failure to pay for rice bought under a subsidy scheme that the caretaker administration admits it is struggling to fund. The rice program was a signature policy of Prime Minister YingluckShinawatra, who was swept to power in 2011 with the help of millions of rural votes, but has become ...

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Brahimi to Meet Syria Sides Separately – Document

Damascus - Mediator LakhdarBrahimi will meet representatives of the warring sides in Syria separately for the first few days of a second round of talks that began on Monday, after the breaking of a local ceasefire set back peace efforts. In a letter reviewed by Reuters on Monday, Brahimi increased pressure on the two sides to show willingness in a peace process sponsored by Moscow and Washington that made n ...

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Hollande Visit Reflects Stronger U.S.-French Ties despite Spy Row

Paris - French President Francois Hollande starts a visit to the United States on Monday with spats over U.S. eavesdropping and trade talks with the EU unlikely to chill a relationship now far warmer than before the 2003 U.S.-led war on Iraq. Hollande, 59, who split from his partner last month after an affair with an actress, arrives solo for the first state visit hosted by President Barack Obama and his wi ...

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China in Rare Crackdown on Sex Industry in Southern Vice Hub

Beijing - Chinese authorities have carried out a rare crackdown on the sex trade in the "sin city" of Dongguan following a candid report by the state broadcaster on the underground industry. China outlawed prostitution after the Communist revolution in 1949, but it returned with a vengeance following landmark economic reforms three decades ago, and has helped fuel a rise in HIV/AIDS and sexually transmitted ...

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Pakistan Has no Favourites in Afghanistan: Aziz

ISLAMABAD - Pakistan has reaffirmed its commitment to continued support for the Afghan-owned reconciliation process for the sake of durable stability in the region.Prime Minister’s Adviser on Foreign Affairs and National Security Sartaj Aziz told a day-long international conference in Islamabad on Sunday that Pakistan had no favourites in Afghanistan.After the drawdown of foreign forces‚ neighbouring countr ...

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US Plans $300m in New Aid to Afghanistan

KABUL - Ahead of a drawdown of troops from Afghanistan, Washington is mulling over $300 million in new aid programmes over next five years to stabilise the country's war-tattered economy, the USAID chief said on Monday. Larry Sampler told the news website Bloomberg the aid covered education, trade and agricultural initiatives. “Going into transition in Afghanistan there has to be economic growth, economic a ...

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MoI to Finalize Security Review of 323 New Polling Stations

Kabul- the Ministry of Interior Affairs (MoI) has finished the security review of 323 new polling stations suggested by the Independent Elections Commission (IEC). Six of the said polling centers face security threats, local officials said on Monday. The suggestions by IEC came after the security officials submitted an assessment to election officials indicating that 414 out of 6,645 total polling stations ...

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Candidates Lack Specific Plans to Strengthen Human Rights: AHRDO

Kabul- Afghanistan's presidential candidates vying to succeed Hamid Karzai in an April election lack specific plans to strengthen the human rights situation in the country, the Afghanistan Human Rights and Democracy Organization (AHRDO) said on Sunday. At the opening ceremony of a two day exhibition, the human rights and democracy organization said that despite achievements in human rights, the candidates d ...

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Civilian Casualties on the Peak

For another consecutive year, the United Nations reported a rise in civilian casualties in Afghanistan. According the UNAMA report, which released on Saturday, civilian casualties in Afghanistan during 2013 have risen 14 percent with around 3000 people killed and more than five thousands wounded during last year. According to the report, the Taliban and other insurgent groups are responsible for most of the ...

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Nengrahar Province: Youths to Take Part in Election Monitoring

The New Line Organization (NLO) with reference to its previous civil activities to courage   youths for taking part in election monitoring. This time NLO hold a conference with help of its members and Nengrahar province. Honorable youths who are keen to cooperate NLO volunteer, to accelerate democracy implementation in a peaceful way. NLO from the beginning of voting-cards distribution till now have hold ma ...

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Ukraine’s Yanukovich, Russia’s Putin Hold Sochi Tete-a-Tete

Kiev - Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovich, who is facing mass protests and economic turmoil at home, held a one-on-one meeting with Russia's Vladimir Putin in Sochi on the day of the opening of the Winter Olympics, a Kremlin aide said on Saturday. Friday's talks between the two presidents in the Russian Black Sea resort on the sidelines of the Olympic celebrations had been expected. Moscow has frozen aid ...

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U.S. Stresses Commitment to Defend Japan in Washington Talks

Washington - The United States on Friday stressed its commitment to the defense of Japan and stability in the Asia-Pacific region against a backdrop of increasingly assertive territorial claims by China. After a meeting with Japanese Foreign Minister Fumio Kishida, Secretary of State John Kerry emphasized the importance of the U.S.-Japan relationship, which both countries say remains robust in spite of a bu ...

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Syria Evacuates Civilians from Besieged Homs Center

Damascus - Syria evacuated 83 civilians on Friday who had lived under government siege in the devastated city of Homs for a year and a half, the first concrete result of talks launched two weeks ago to try to end the country's civil war. Buses ferried dozens of weary-looking evacuees, accompanied by the Syrian Arab Red Crescent, to a meeting point outside Homs where aid workers, soldiers and police were gat ...

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