Contents of the ‘Afghanistan’ category in chronological order.

FMIC Women’s Wing Foundation Stone Ceremony (Kabul, Afghanistan)

There is one more dimension of our future vision that deserves to be mentioned before we conclude. I refer to an exciting plan to create, on the land adjacent to this site, a great new Kabul International Medical Centre — a Centre of Excellence for providing tertiary care services and medical education of the highest quality. This new complex will be an intellectual and service hub for an integrated health delivery system serving the entire Central Asian region.

The region includes the neighbouring countries of Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan, Northern Pakistan, Kazakhstan and even Western China, where the Integrated Health System would impact over 100 million people. The success of this regional initiative, in my view, is predicated on public-private partnerships that sustain the institutions through best practice. Indeed the relationship we have established with this hospital and those in Bamyan and Faizabad are models of such partnerships.

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Showun Bridge Foundation Stone Ceremony (Showun, Shurobod District, Tajikistan; Khohon Province, Afghanistan) ·· incomplete

What you are doing today is setting a remarkable example of people coming together for a common purpose across frontiers — and that common purpose is to improve the quality of life of every individual in those societies…. These bridges enable people to come together to share best practice in developing human society. Across frontiers, you can build best practice in education, in healthcare, in economic development, in financial institutions, in rural activity, and it is this capacity to bring the best of society together for the benefit of all the people that I think is the most important lesson that we have today.

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Statement at the Kabul Conference on Afghanistan (Kabul, Afghanistan)

AKDN is of the view that investing in the institutions of civil society and in their capacity to deliver services deserves far greater priority, attention, support and resources than has hitherto been the case, even as investments in rebuilding the State’s institutions continue. Civil society institutions are best able to take into consideration, to reflect, specific provincial or local political situations and socio-economic needs and opportunities. They are well placed to ensure that progress is both public and transparent, that good governance is observed as the norm, just as they are the best tools for ensuring better impact and for hastening visible socio-economic development.

There is need for a sub-national governance structure that is clear, efficient and transparent. There is no reason why planning or programming at the provincial or local level need either contradict or undermine central authority. On the contrary, bankable programmes need to be evolved and implemented that are synchronised with sub-national governance and policy and with the reintegration programme….

There needs to be a willingness to support small-scale and medium-level investments in the short term that may not immediately be considered financially sustainable by conventional measures, but which experience demonstrates are necessary to achieve medium to long-term returns and benefit.

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Address to the Enabling Environment Conference (Kabul, Afghanistan)

The term “Enabling Environment” has two implications which I would underscore today. First, it reminds us that the conditions which enable progress can be extremely complex, that an entire “environment” of interacting forces must come together if development is truly to take root — and to take off.

Second — the term recognises that even the right environment is still only an enabling condition — not a sufficient one. Our conference title does not talk about an environment which “solves” or “cures” or “progresses” or “prevails” — but rather about an environment which “enables”. In the end, human progress must grow out of the human heart and soul. The environment enables — but it is the human spirit, guided and supported by the Divine Will, which eventually triumphs. What a sound Enabling Environment must do is to create a favourable framework in which human creativity can flourish….

Laying the State’s political foundation is a necessary first step for an Enabling Environment, but even effective government can take us only so far. And that is why we have been talking more in recent years about two other sectors: first, what I often call the role of “civil society” and, secondly, the capacities of the private sector.

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Ishkashim Bridge Opening Ceremony (Ishkashim, Tajikistan; Afghanistan)

In the recent past, in this region, bridges have opened at Tem, Darwaz and Langar. Like them, the Ishkashim Bridge is a concrete expression of cooperation amongst the Governments of Tajikistan and Afghanistan and the Aga Khan Development Network….

Each of the bridges I have mentioned has had a considerable moral and symbolic value, inspiring a spirit of confidence, progress and hope. But these projects also have a very concrete economic value, allowing for a substantial expansion of productive exchange. People in both countries are granted unprecedented access to markets beyond their immediate frontiers. Goods originating in Pakistan can now make their way to Tajikistan. Products from China now have a fast road transit to Afghanistan….

Links and meeting places created by the bridges do more than simply facilitate commerce. We exchange questions and answers. We trade in products, but we can also trade in ideas. Communities on each side of the border will know one another better and be better able to help one another grow, prosper and share the lessons of life.

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French Medical Institute for Children Inauguration (Kabul, Afghanistan)

I should especially emphasise the significance of this Institute in the reconstruction of Afghanistan. This Institute was created through a Public-Private Partnership to establish a new medical institute through a strategic collaboration: The support of the French Government, that of the Afghan Government, the participation of the French Non-Governmental Organisations La Chaine de l’Espoir, and Afghan Children, and the Aga Khan University. This collaboration is today unique in Afghanistan and will bring to the Afghan population a new high quality hospital that will be accessible to the underprivileged….

[We] are highly desirous that this hospital develops into a high level university hospital tertiary care centre which will offer new specialisations — essential for Afghanistan — such as neuroscience, cardiology, oncology and many other fields of medicine, which best meet the needs of the country.

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Kabul Serena Hotel Opening Ceremony (Kabul, Afghanistan)

[T]here are some who will ask: why build an hotel in Afghanistan at this stage of its struggle for development? And why build one of a five star level? In 2002, the Government of Afghanistan asked the Aga Khan Development Network — the AKDN — to help in restoring Kabul’s hotel capacity, which had been almost totally destroyed by the civil war. The government wanted to ensure that state visitors, diplomats, government officials, foreign and local investors, donor agency representatives and tourists travelling to Kabul would have acceptable accommodation. The Kabul Hotel had been a notable landmark and centre of activity in the city since it was built in 1945; hence it was an obvious candidate for restoration….

[I would like] to explain briefly why we attach importance to our work in the field of culture…. Our experience in situations as diverse as remote parts of Northern Pakistan, to Delhi, Zanzibar and Central Cairo, is that the restoration of historic communities and important cultural assets serves as a trampoline for economic development. The restoration activity is a source of direct employment for workers and skilled craftsmen, many of whom live in adjacent neighbourhoods. The refurbished facilities themselves become an attraction for tourists, generating more opportunity. And as the residents of surrounding areas find themselves with new sources of income, they spend some of it improving their own homes and neighbourhoods.

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Darwaz Bridge Opening Ceremony (Darwaz, Tajikistan; Darwaz, Afghanistan)

The [Tajikistan/Afghanistan AKDN sponsored] bridges carry lessons important for all of us working in mountain environments, which is, that small investments in critical infrastructure enable people to come together, to work together, and to gain better use of economic and social opportunity.

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Aga Khan Development Network and Government of Afghanistan ‘Memorandum of Understanding to establish Academy of Excellence’ Signing Ceremony (Kabul, Afghanistan)

The Afghan Academy will significantly enhance the efforts of the government to rebuild and strengthen the Afghan education sector. It will empower future generations of educated men and women with the qualities, attitudes and knowledge that they will require when seeking to establish a peaceful and progressive civil society for the country.

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Tem Bridge Opening Ceremony (Tem, Tajikistan; Demogan, Afghanistan) ·· incomplete

Bridging the Pyanj River today means creating a corridor of hope and opportunity for this entire region. By facilitating the flow of goods, services, knowledge and technology in both directions, this bridge will allow communities on either side of the frontier, as well as neighbouring countries, to gain from one another and to contribute to one another’s welfare.

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Various events during the October 2002 visit to Central Asia (Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Afghanistan) ·· maybe missing

MAYBE MISSING: We regret that some (or many) of the speeches during this visit are not available in the Archive. Listed below are some events he attended where Mawlana Hazar Imam made or may have made a speech. We would be very grateful if any of our readers who may have these speeches, or others from the visit, would kindly share them with us. Please click here for information on making submissions to NanoWisdoms; we thank you for your assistance.

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Aga Khan Development Network and Government of Afghanistan ‘Agreement of Co-operation for Development’ Signing Ceremony (Kabul, Afghanistan)

Referring to “exploratory work for investments in telecommunications and in tourism,” the Aga Khan saw these as “stimulating a multiplicity of ancillary industries at the same time as serving an urgent need in the hospitality industry.” A major national initiative in micro-credit to promote entrepreneurship and build capital is under consideration with the possible involvement of the International Finance Corporation.

“[I]n each of these areas where we feel the greatest need for capacity building, we have been extremely conscious of the fact that opportunities must be created for women. This is why we are targeting women as major beneficiaries with regard to the income generation activities related to agriculture, the training of nurses, the professional education of teachers and for receipt of micro-credit.”

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Public Address (Shugnan, Tajikistan)

On this day of joy and happiness, and at the beginning of this Irshad, I convey to all my murids my most affectionate and most loving blessings, and I pray that Allah may bring all of you here present, and to your families and homes, peace and hope in the future….

All Afghans should, as promptly as possible, re-establish open and brotherly dialogue among themselves, as our faith instructs us to do, so that Islam’s ethic of peace becomes a national reality…. I have observed with great pain and sadness, Muslims fighting against Muslims in Afghanistan … We must respect the sanctity of life. It is the Holy Qur’an itself which says, “And who so saves a life, it is as if he had saved the entirety of mankind.” …

Because the ethics and ethical premises of civil life are the same in all schools of Islam, we have the remarkable opportunity to build the future of the civil societies in which we will live, on premises which will unite all Muslims, and not divide them….

We are not allowed to live in hate. Wealth and power are not objectives in themselves, but are to be used in the service of others. Those whom life has marginalised are to be helped … to free themselves from their constraints…. Anything to do with drugs is to be rigorously avoided…. These are the ethical premises on which we need to build to bring peace to Afghanistan, to eliminate hate and division, and thereafter rebuild the country for the benefit of all Afghans.

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