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Would the President’s Plans Meet Resistance?

President Ashraf Ghani has promised extensive reforms after he took over the power from former president Hamid Karzai last month. With his pledges, public expectations from the president have been high. However, there are relatively considerable levels of skepticisms over his hasty moves in issuing decrees among the people. There are stories about the president’s day-to-day activities which indicate he is t ...

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Kabul Bank Case under Spotlight

Officials at the Attorney General Office say they have arrested even out of 21 individuals involved in Kabul Bank’s corruption case in collaboration with Kabul police. The spokesman of the Attorney general Office said the agency is now pursuing the rest of those accused of involvement in the case. According to the AGO spokesman, two key stakeholders of the bank case are now in prison and former banker Abdul ...

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Ahmadzai’s First Move in Confronting Corruption

In his first major move to deal with major corruption cases, President Ashraf Ghani Ahmadzai ordered the corruption case of Kabul Bank reopened. According to the presidential decree, the bank case, which was one of the most infamous cases of corruption during former president Hamid Karzai’s era, should once again be reviewed. After the $900 million fraud committed by owners and high-profile managers of Kabu ...

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A Significant Step Forward

Only a day after taking over power from former president Hamid Karzai, the new government signed the bilateral security agreement (BSA) with the US as well as the status of forces (SOFA) with NATO. The security pact with the United States was signed by Hanif Atmar, the newly-appointed national advisor to President Ahmadzai and James Cunningham, US ambassador to Afghanistan. President Karzai refused to sign ...

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The Resurgence of the Militants

As the statesmen and government officials are preoccupied with the ongoing electoral controversies and the unity government politics, Taliban militants are mounting heavy assault on Ajristan district of Ghani province killing allegedly more than one hundred people and burning down homes of ordinary people. According to the reports, the militants have executed more than dozen people including women and child ...

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Election Impasse Unhelpful for the Security Situation

Amidst the election stalemate, the militant groups are increasingly stepping up their attacks across the country. The Taliban clearly aim to further destabilize the country while it is experiencing two important transitions: military transition from NATO to Afghan forces and political transition through the ongoing election which is almost deadlocked now. On Tuesday, the militants who organized the bombing ...

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The Punjabi Taliban Threat to Afghanistan

The Afghan Foreign Ministry Affairs has summoned a Pakistani embassy diplomat over statements made by Pakistani Punjab Taliban leader that the group would focus on fighting in Afghanistan. Two days earlier, Asmatullah Muaweya, the leader of the Punjab branch of Pakistani Taliban announced the group was going to lay down arms against Pakistani army and cease fighting in Pakistan instead they would intensify ...

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The Endless Election Stalemate

Two days after presidential candidate Abdullah Abdullah told a news conference that the process was faced a stalemate and that he would not accept a fraudulent election outcome, another presidential candidate Ashraf Ghani Ahmadzai warned he was not going to compromise the constitution. Mr. Ahmadzai asserted that he is committed to the unity government deal and would continue talks with Abdullah’s camp. As t ...

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The Sticky Points of the Power-sharing

As the vote audit reached to a final conclusion, the two election teams are still differing over structure of the unity government’s chief executive. There are intense negotiations going on between the two sides to find a resolution to the differences. However, the two sides still seem to be differing on some key issues of the power sharing deal that was mediated by US Secretary of State John Kerry. Accordi ...

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Audit ends, but election puzzle remains unsolved

The UN-super¬vised audit of votes cast in Afghanistan’s disputed presidential election was completed on Friday, officials said, but the results would not be known for days. Both presidential candidates claim to have won the June 14 election, triggering a political stalemate as US-led NATO combat troops withdraw after 13 years of fighting the Taliban. The United Nations has said the audit results should be f ...

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Electoral Dispute: Stalemate or Breakthrough?

After the deadline set by Abdullah’s team for withdrawing from the vote audit process and political talks over formation of new government past, there were mixed reports over what kind of progress was made in talks for overcoming the recent differences between the two camps. A spokesman for Dr. Abdullah’s camp said Ashraf Ghani’s team has proposed a new initiative that recommends more powers for the chief e ...

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The Evolving Election Impasse

In a crucial week for Afghanistan when Afghans are awaiting presidential election results, the two candidates are pushing the process further into deadlock. It seems that as the vote audit inches towards the final stages, the two sides tend to take extreme positions over the process. Abdullah’s camp announced it would withdraw from the vote audit and political talks on election altogether if their legitimat ...

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Efforts for Ending the Election Stalemate

As the two election camps are once again in loggerheads over the terms of the unity government and the chief executive’s power in the next government, there are ever increasing efforts to meditate between the two sides. The two candidates have agreed formation of a joint committee to consider the power and authority of the chief executive in the new unity government. Regarding the role of the international ...

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Avoiding Collapse of the Electoral Deal

Afghan election stakeholders are far from being able to resolve all differences over the next government as the two sides take extreme positions regarding the contentious issues of the elections. Atta Mohammad Noor’s threat is coming as another test for all Afghan political spectrums that have stakes in the ongoing elections. If any of the parties takes non-constructive approach towards the vote audit proce ...

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The Differences over Vote Audit

As all election stakeholders are involved in the vote audit, the process is again facing challenges as the two election camps are again in loggerheads over the vote count. Based on the agreement reached between the parties with mediation from US Secretary of State John Kerry, the vote count will proceed with direction observation from the election camps as well as foreign observers and the United Nations. A ...

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Pakistan Demanding US Presence in Afghanistan

Pakistan has asked the United States to review its plan for withdrawing all troops from Afghanistan by end of 2016. According to reports, a delegation of Pakistani military officials has recently visited Washington to urge American officials to back the ongoing military offensive in North Waziristan even after troop pullout from Afghanistan. The development comes at a time when Pakistani military is carryin ...

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The Tricky Process of Vote Audit

The process of vote audit resumed a day after differences emerged between the two election camps. According to the IEC spokesman Noor Mohammad Noor, the differences emerged between the two sides whether votes with voter signatures and finger impressions should be considered as valid or not. With the suspension of the process Sunday, the two teams and the United Nations started negotiations for reaching an a ...

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Afghanistan-China’s Developing Relations

As the US is withdrawing forces from Afghanistan, China is increasingly boosting its presence in the country through development of diplomatic relations and large-scale industrial and construction projects. According to the reports, China announced it had appointed a special envoy for Afghanistan. The role of the special envoy will be ensuring China’s friendly relations with Afghanistan and ensuring the cou ...

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The Notorious Bill of MPs Privileges

Activists and a number of lawmakers on Wednesday opposed a new draft law that would grant extensive privileges to MPs including a 25 percent salary for the rest of their life. The activists participating in the demonstration called on the Parliament to remain committed to defending the rights of the people and refrain proceeding with approval of the law. The MPs approved the law unanimously on Saturday and ...

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The Outcome of Intense Negotiations

As the US Secretary of State John Kerry is struggling to broker an agreement between Afghan elections stakeholders for resolving the election crisis, there are leaks suggesting vote recounts and some sort of coalition government. According to unconfirmed reports, the talks are centered at audit of votes of more than 11,000 stations. It seems there has been much progress in the talks as Mr. Kerry has been in ...

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