World Video | Defence | Foreign Affairs | Natural Events | Trade | NZ in World News | NZ National News Video | NZ Regional News | Search


Afghanistan: Concern Over Deteriorating Security

Afghanistan: UN Envoy Expresses Concern Over Deteriorating Security

Voicing concern over the volatile security situation in Afghanistan, the top United Nations envoy to the country today urged NATO to consider the importance of stability there, especially in the run-up to planned elections.

Speaking to reporters in Kabul, Jean Arnault, head of the UN mission (UNAMA), cited a series of violent and sometimes deadly attacks in the past three weeks as evidence that the situation "has become more volatile."

Last night, three rocket-propelled grenades were fired at an electoral office close to Kabul. On Friday there was a similar attack in Kandahar in the country's south. On 9 June, near Kunduz in the north, 11 Chinese construction workers and their local guard were killed after an ambush on their living compound.

"We are now facing direct attacks with fairly heavy weapons against the office of the electoral process," he said. "This is clearly an attempt at undermining the process and again it stresses how important it is for the international community to do more in order to assist this process."

National presidential and parliamentary elections are scheduled to be held in September. Voter registration is currently taking place across the country.

As NATO countries prepare to gather in the coming days in Istanbul, where they are slated to take a decision on further troop deployment in Afghanistan, Mr. Arnault urged the organization to consider the country's pressing security concerns during the electoral process.

He also reminded NATO of the need to continue helping former fighters in Afghanistan to rejoin society.

On the positive side, Mr. Arnault said that the quickening pace of voter registration in recent weeks indicates that Afghans strongly desire political participation, despite the threats from extremists.

Over 4.1 million Afghans - about a third of them women - have now registered, with daily figures topping 101,000 twice last week. Afghan authorities estimate there are 9.5 million potential eligible voters.

Mr. Arnault said the fast pace "confirms that an electoral process is something that is meaningful to the overwhelming majority of the people."

© Scoop Media

World Headlines


Preliminary Results: MH17 Investigation Report

The Joint Investigation Team (JIT) is convinced of having obtained irrefutable evidence to establish that on 17 July 2014, flight MH-17 was shot down by a BUK missile from the 9M38-series. According to the JIT there is also evidence identifying the launch location that involves an agricultural field near Pervomaiskyi which, at the time, was controlled by pro-Russian fighters. More>>


At The UN: Paris Climate Agreement Moves Closer To Entry Into Force

The Paris Agreement on climate change moved closer toward entering into force in 2016 as 31 more countries joined the agreement today at a special event hosted by United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon. More>>



Gordon Campbell: On The End Game In Spain (And Other World News)

The coverage of international news seems almost entirely dependent on a random selection of whatever some overseas news agency happens to be carrying overnight... Here are a few interesting international stories that have largely flown beneath the radar this past week. More>>

Amnesty/Human Rights Watch: Appalling Abuse, Neglect Of Refugees On Nauru

Refugees and asylum seekers on Nauru, most of whom have been held there for three years, routinely face neglect by health workers and other service providers who have been hired by the Australian government, as well as frequent unpunished assaults by local Nauruans. More>>


Other Australian Detention

Gordon Campbell: On The Censorship Havoc In South Africa’s State Broadcaster

Demands have included an order to staff that there should be no further negative news about the country’s President Jacob Zuma, and SABC camera operators responsible for choosing camera angles that have allegedly made the President ‘look shorter’ were to be retrained... More>>


Gordon Campbell: On A Bad Week For Malcolm Turnbull, And The Queen

Malcolm Turnbull’s immediate goal – mere survival – is still within his grasp... In every other respect though, this election has been a total disaster for the Liberals. More>>


Get More From Scoop

Search Scoop  
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news