Sunday, March 9, 2014
Long-Serving Afghan Vice President Fahim Dies
By RFE/RL's Radio Free Afghanistan
March 9, 2014
Afghan officials say Vice President Mohammad Qasim Fahim has died of natural causes at the age of 56.
Local reports suggest the specific cause of death, early on March 9, was heart failure, possibly in relation to diabetes.
The former warlord had served as President Hamid Karzai's first deputy since 2009.
Karzai's office quoted the president as calling it "a great loss for Afghanistan."
A visibly moved Karzai issued a video message of condolence via YouTube on Fahim's passing.
Authorities have declared three days of national mourning.
Fahim's death is unlikely to significantly affect next month's election, when voters should pick a successor to Karzai, who has been Afghanistan's only head of state since the UN-backed Bonn Agreement installed him following the U.S.-led invasion that ousted the Taliban in late 2001.
Fahim was best known as an ally of Ahmad Shah Mas'ud, the charismatic Northern Alliance commander who fought Soviet troops and was assassinated by Al-Qaeda in 2001.
With reporting by AFP
Leading Afghan women honored
on the eve of Int’l women’s day
Khaama Press / March 9, 2014
France and Germany for the first time honored two competent and leading Afghan women on the eve of international women’s day.
The two women received ‘competent woman of the year’ award which was given jointly by France and Germany, after they received votes from jury for their activities.
Sharifa Danish Zaringar is an Afghan poet and sculptor who has devoted over 30 years of her life in arts and literature. She was elected as one of the competent woman to receive the award from France and Germany.
Her poetry was welcomed by famous poet Khalilullah Khalil and she is currently busy working with the Afghan girls in arts sector in Afghanistan.
She is looking to open an arts school where she can teach arts to others in the country.
Amina Hasani is the other leading Afghan woman who was elected to receive the award by France and Germany. She is a photographer and journalist and she attracted the attention of the civil society due to her activities.
She is also part of the associations such as the Afghanistan photographers network and association of the female Afghan journalists.
Hasani is also a volunteer in one of the international associations which operates in Bamiyan province to protect the Afghan children.
She is keen to continue her higher education besides having an active role in photography.
The French embassy in Kabul said France and Germany were keen to honor the two women as the two competent women are presenting new and exceptional pictures of the women and improve the situation of the Afghan women due to their activities.
9 Afghan soldiers killed in separate roadside explosions
Khaama Press / March 9, 2014
At least nine Afghan national army (ANA) soldiers were killed following separate explosions in various provinces of Afghanistan, defense officials announced Sunday.
Gen. Zahir Azimi, spokesman for the defense ministry of Afghanistan said Sunday at least seven Afghan national army soldiers were killed following improvised explosive device (IED) explosion.
Gen. Azimi did not disclose further information regarding the exact locations where IED attacks took place.
In the meantime, Gen. Azimi said at least two Afghan national army (ANA) soldiers were killed following an IED attack in Maiwand district of Kandahar province on Sunday morning.
No group including the Taliban militants has so far claimed responsibility behind the incidents.
Taliban militants frequently use improvised explosive device to target Afghan and coalition security forces; however in majority of the attacks Afghan civilians are targeted.
At least seven civilians were killed and eight others were injured after their vehicle struck with an improvised explosive device (IED) in Mosa Qala district of Helmand province.