Euro-Asia Transport Links (EATL)
- Category: Other Int Org
- Hits: 13
The Group of Experts on Euro-Asia Transport Links (EATL) held its tenth session on 27-28 May 2014 in Geneva. Representatives of Islamic Republic of Afghanistan, Belgium, Germany, Islamic Republic of Iran, Kazakhstan, Latvia, Mongolia, the Russian Federation, Turkey and Ukraine, Trans-European Railway (TER) Intergovernmental Organization for International Carriage by Rail (OTIF), International Union of Railways (UIC) and International Federation of Freight Forwarders Associations (FIATA) were participating in this meeting.
Mr Jarullah Mansory deputy minister of ministry of transport and Afghanistan permanent mission in Geneva were representing Islamic republic of Afghanistan in this important meeting.
Due to the absence of both the Chair and the Vice Chair of the EATL Group of Experts, Mr. Andrey Timochkin (Russian Federation) and Mr. Kostiantyn Savchenko(Ukraine) respectively, the Group elected Mr Sergei Egorshev (Russian Federation) as Chair and Mr Andris Maldrups (Latvia) as the Vice-Chair for the 10th EATL Expert Group session.
The Group of Experts had a substantive exchange of views about the importance of ports as starting/ending points of EATL rail and road routes between Asia and Europe. The group pointed out that more than 20 very important ports are feeding the prioritized 9 EATL rail routes with cargo. In addition, it was noticed that more and more shipping companies invest in ports hinterland connections by establishing rail operators as to provide door to door services to their clients. The experts clarified that the main objective of this agenda item is neither to compete with ports nor to attract cargo from ports but to create an integrated land transport network that efficiently delivers goods along Euro-Asian corridors having ports as feeding mechanisms.
The representative of FIATA illustrated the following issues as obstacles that freight forwarders are facing while transporting along the EATL routes.
• Extremely long waiting times at border points between Iran and Turkmenistan with situation worsening due to discrepancies between Uzbekistan and Tajikistan border points. Average waiting times range from 2 – 3 days up to 6 – 7 days;
• Insufficient road infrastructure in the east and northern part of Turkmenistan and also in Tajikistan and Kyrgyzstan;
• Security issues in Afghanistan and in Iraq. It is recommended to utilize escort services;
• Non availability of parking places which are secure as per international standards;
• Transit fees taking the form of “Tolls” which are extremely high in the case of high value of transported cargo;
• Russian road safety is not ideal and is getting worse year after year. In 2012 traffic deaths continued to increase with nearly 28,000 lives lost. There were 27,953 fatalities caused by Russian road traffic accidents;
• Since the end of last year there are a number of regulatory constraints making road transportation and driving in Russia more difficult;
The Group of Experts’ eleventh session is tentatively scheduled to take place in Geneva from 30 to 31 October 2014.
The Human Rights Council 26th Session
- Category: Human Rights
- Hits: 65
The 26th session of the Human Rights Council was held from 10th to 27th of June, bringing together all member and observer states and non-governmental organizations to discuss the on-going human rights issues and challenges around the world.
On 10th of June, President of Human Rights council delivered a statement and declared the opening of the session. Following that Ms. Navi Pillay, the High Commissioner for Human Rights addressed the council for the last time as High Commissioner for Human Rights. Ms. Pillay pointed out that her office has worked impartially, based on commitment to truth, with no tolerance for double standards over six years that she was leading the office, and hoped that the Office of High Commissioner would continue its work impartially.
The main issues that 26th session of the Human Rights Council focused on were right to freedom of opinion and expression, rights to freedom of peaceful assembly and of association, violence and discrimination against women, trafficking in persons, especially women and children, female genital mutilation, child, early and forced marriage, independence of judges and lawyers , extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions, human rights of internally displaced persons, human rights of migrants, safety of journalists, human rights and transnational corporations and other business enterprises, and extreme poverty and human rights. Moreover, the human rights situation in Syrian Arab Republic, Belarus, Democratic Republic of Korea, Palestine and other occupied territories were discussed along the session.
Furthermore, the Human Right Council considered and adopted the final outcome of the second cycle of the UPR of Afghanistan, New Zealand, Chile, Yamane, Uruguay, Vanuatu, Macedonia, Slovakia, Eretria, Dominican Republic, Viet Nam and Cambodia.
At the beginning of consideration and adoption of final outcome of the second cycle of the UPR of Afghanistan, in his statement Dr. Mohammad Qasim Hashimzai, the head of the delegation of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan, provided the council with the view on the recommendations Afghanistan has during the UPR Working Group Session which was held on 27 January 2014. Mr. Hashimzai stated that Afghanistan received 224 recommendations during the working group session, where 178 of them were supported by the Afghan Government and the rest were transferred to Kabul where after the consideration 10 recommendations are accepted, 12 are rejected and 23 are still under discussions and reconsideration, to which the response will be provided in proper time.
International Labour Conference, was held in Geneva Switzerland
- Category: Humanitarian
- Hits: 80
International Labor Conference, 103rd Session was officially opened by Chairperson of the conference on 28 May 2014 in United Nation office in Geneva.
The main agenda of this conference was to elect members and deputy members of the ILO governing body for period of 2014- 2017.
During this annual meeting the issue of unemployed around the world especially young unemployed, fair migration, application of standards, forced Labor, Transitioning from the Informal Economy were the hot topics among several other issues during this annual meeting. In the side events there were gatherings of ministers of non alliance movements with the chairmanship of Islamic Republic of Iran and the Solidarity for Palestinian workers.
4747 from 165 member countries at level of Ministers and Pre ministers were participating in this event.
Afghanistan Delegation was led by H.E Mrs. Amina Afzali minister of Labor, Social, Martyred and disabled, the advanced group of this delegation arrived on 27 May followed by arrival of minister on 3rd , June 2014.
Among 200 speakers Minister Afzaly delivered her speech on 5th of June and emphasized on solutions for unemployed and under employed, labor migration, forced labor and child labor. In part of her speech H.E mentioned that the Afghanistan Government achieved the reform of national Labor law and other relevant regulations. Minster also announced Afghanistan 4 year social- economic development plan and exploitation of mineral resources and willing to develop the agricultural sector.
Mrs. Afzali also visited the Director General of ILO; she thanked ILO’s assistance for developing Draft of National Labor policy and expansion of its activities in Afghanistan and asked the continuation of its support to the country.
Over the course of this important visit to further deepen relations and friendship with ILO and its member countries, H.E. the minister met with a number of her counter parts from Salt ant of Oman, Qatar, Iraq, United Arab Emirates and discussed about sending Afghan workers to mentioned countries. The brotherly countries welcomed the idea and showed readiness for signing MOUs and bilateral contracts in this regard. At the same time they emphasized on skill labors as well.
- AFGHANISTAN MINISTRY OF PUBLIC HEALTH ATTENDS SIXTY-SEVENTH WORLD HEALTH ASSEMBLY
- Human Rights Council Universal Periodic Review Working Group holds its nineteenth Session
- The Human Rights Council 25th session
- Afghanistan High Level Delegates Participate in the 130th Assembly of the Inter-Parliamentary Union