Afghanistan set to ink deals with UAE in energy, mining sectors

Afghanistan's President Ashraf Ghani, center, speaks during a press conference at the presidential palace in Kabul, Afghanistan Wednesday, Dec. 10, 2014. (AP)
Updated 18 March 2019

Afghanistan set to ink deals with UAE in energy, mining sectors

  • The UAE has become a commercial hub for Afghan investors and traders who, according to estimates, have invested billions of dollars in the past decade

KABUL: Afghan President Ashraf Ghani left for the UAE on Sunday for talks with leaders of the Gulf state and to sign memorandums of understanding (MoUs) for bilateral engagements in sectors including mining, energy and agriculture.
Since assuming power more than four years ago, Ghani has been trying to forge closer ties with Saudi Arabia and the UAE.
Coinciding with Ghani’s visit to UAE, the Afghan Ministry of Social and Labor Affairs said that Afghanistan will send some 2,000 vocational laborers to the UAE as part of a pilot project in coming weeks.
The UAE has become a commercial hub for Afghan investors and traders who, according to estimates, have invested billions of dollars in the past decade.
It has also hosted informal talks between Taliban delegates and Afghan politicians in the past, and recently one round of peace talks between representatives of the group and US diplomats was held there.
Ghani’s office said that the president will meet with Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces Mohamed Bin Zayed.
“Besides issuing a joint communique, President Ghani and His Highness Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan will preside over the signing of MoUs in the fields of culture, education, sports, mining, energy and agriculture by the governments of Afghanistan and UAE,” it said in a statement.
Janaqa Naveed, chief of public relations of Afghanistan’s Chamber of Commerce, said that trade between Afghanistan and the UAE has jumped up in recent years.
“We have had long and friendly relations with the UAE and that has attracted Afghans to invest there due to the facilitation given by UAE to Afghans,” Naveed told Arab News.
“The volume of annual trade stands to tens of millions of dollars both in terms of export and imports and in addition to bilateral trade, UAE has helped Afghanistan with over $1.5 bn in aid projects such as building two hospitals and townships,” he said.


Truck drives into US crowd protesting George Floyd killing, underscoring volatile situation

Updated 01 June 2020

Truck drives into US crowd protesting George Floyd killing, underscoring volatile situation

  • Protesters managed to stop the truck and beat up the driver, who was later arrested by police
  • A New York City Police car earlier drove into a crowd of protesters who were pelting it with objects

MINNEAPOLIS, Minnesota: A tanker truck drove through thousands of people marching on a Minneapolis highway to protest the death of George Floyd on Sunday before protesters dragged the driver from the cab and beat him, according to a Reuters witness and authorities.
It did not appear any of the marchers were injured when the truck raced toward them on I-35, blowing its horn, sending protesters scattering before coming to a stop, according to the witness and a tweet by the Minnesota Department of Public Security (MNDPS).
Police arrived soon after and arrested the truck driver, who was taken to a local hospital with non-life-threatening injuries, MNDPS said.
Video of the incident shows protesters swarming the vehicle before it comes to a stop.

Protesters hand over to police the driver of a tanker truck after he drove into a crowd marching on 35W north bound highway in Minneapolis, Minnesota, on May 31, 2020. (REUTERS/Eric Miller)

“The incident just underscores the volatile situation we have out there,” Minnesota Governor Tim Walz told a news conference, adding he did not know the motives of the driver.
It marked the second incident in as many days of a vehicle driving at people protesting Floyd’s death after a New York City Police car was captured on video on Saturday driving into a crowd of protesters who were pelting it with objects.
“Very disturbing actions by a truck driver on I-35W, inciting a crowd of peaceful demonstrators,” MNDPS tweeted.
Video showed the truck had a logo on its side for “Kenan Advantage Group,” an Ohio-based transportation company.
The company said in a statement that it was informed of an incident involving one of its independent contractors in Minneapolis and it would be cooperating with investigating authorities.
MNDPS did not identify the driver but said the Minnesota State Patrol and the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension were investigating the incident as a criminal matter.