Quotes: US MENA   Enter Symbol: NewsLetter: Search: advanced

At a popular Kabul restaurant, the front lines of Afghan war  Join our daily free Newsletter

MENAFN - Arab News - 23/01/2014
No. of Ratings : 0
Add to Mixx!



(MENAFN -Arab News) For Kabul’s expatriate crowd, a visit to a restaurant in the Afghan capital’s well-guarded diplomatic area was one of the few attractions of living in the war-ravaged nation

Not any more

Last week, a suicide attack by Taleban insurgents at a popular Lebanese restaurant killed 21 people, including 13 foreigners, among them the IMF’s chief representative in Afghanistan and three United Nations workers. It was the deadliest attack on foreign civilians since Afghanistan’s civil war began in 2001

Major international organizations have placed Kabul’s restaurants out of bounds for their staff, possibly making it a turning point for the few thousand diplomats, aid workers and journalists living there

Even before the strike, there were doubts about the future of international organizations in Afghanistan as concern mounted that with the withdrawal of most foreign troops this year, the security environment would only get worse

“We’ve had tragedies before. But when it happens at this time, you’ve got organizations thinking about their liability and exposure, I wonder what the ripple effects of this one are going to be,” said a senior NATO official, who asked not to be named because he is not authorized to speak to the media

On Friday night, the busiest night of the week, a Taleban militant set off explosives on his person outside the Taverna du Liban restaurant, and two others rushed in behind with automatic rifles, spraying diners with bullets

The attack is likely to quicken the exodus of foreigners from Afghanistan, but it remains to be seen how deep the impact will be on development projects and aid

The government relies on aid for roughly three-quarters of its budget and its army is almost entirely dependent on foreign money. Donors have pledged more than 16 billion over four years in future aid through to 2016

“What would impact operations ... is if internationals become a target because of the publicity that’s been generated,” said a senior UN official. “That would affect aid delivery.

Adding to anxiety, President Hamid Karzai has refused to sign a bilateral deal with the United States that would allow some US forces to remain after 2014. Washington is threatening to pull all of its troops out, leaving Afghanistan’s fledging army to fight the Taleban alone

Major international organizations clamped strict curbs on their staff this week, banning most from non-essential travel and the use of private guesthouses, including those with armed guards. Restaurants were out of bounds until further notice

The Sufi Restaurant, another popular Kabul dining spot among expatriates, now sits silent and almost deserted

“I wanted to show pure Afghan culture and pure Afghan food to foreigners,” said owner Mohammad Azim Popal. “After this incident, neither foreigners nor locals have come to the restaurant.

At Finest supermarket, long a draw for expatriates even though it has been bombed in the past, guards at the door were thrown into panic on Monday at the arrival of journalists with cameras, fearing they might contain hidden explosives

The Gandamack Lodge — a restaurant and hotel that is legendary among foreigners in Kabul — was deserted at lunchtime. Staff refused to speak to journalists and the owner did not respond to a request for an interview

A single defiant customer turned up at Sufi Restaurant in the early afternoon and ordered a cup of tea

“I believe if you are afraid in this country, you should leave ... personally, I am not making any changes,” said the customer, Simran Kaur Lohnes, a 42-year-old German who co-founded Afghan Opportunity Business Services, a for-profit organization that advises firms on tax, legal and other matters

But Lohnes was gloomy about the future, predicting insurgents would step up attacks ahead of a presidential election in April, potentially giving incumbent Karzai an excuse to keep his grip on power.


 


Arab News




  MENA News Headlines
 Oct 23 2014 - 18m vehicles likely on Saudi roads by year-endArab News
(MENAFN - Arab News) Eighteen million licensed vehicles are likely to be on Saudi roads by the end of this year from 17 million last year according to a study published by Al-Eqtisadiah daily. The ...

 Oct 23 2014 - Saudi Aramco, Chinese Sepco sign dealMENAFN
(MENAFN) Saudi Aramco announced it has signed a contract with a Chinese group for a project to help expand the capacity of the main gas pipeline across Saudi Arabia, in a project that aims to improve ...

 Oct 23 2014 - Qatar Digital Library launchedThe Peninsula
(MENAFN - The Peninsula) Over half a million pages of archives and manuscripts on the history of Qatar and the Gulf and Arab Islamic sciences are available free online with the launch of Qatar ...

 Oct 23 2014 - Qatar- Deals with Turkey agencies to educate Syrian refugeesThe Peninsula
(MENAFN - The Peninsula) H H Sheikha Moza bint Nasser, Chairperson, Education Above All, yesterday witnessed the signing of two memorandums of understanding between EAA and two Turkish development ...

 Oct 22 2014 - Saudi- Pak expats recall soldiers' braveryArab News
(MENAFN - Arab News) Mavra a Riyadh-based women's literary and cultural organization celebrated Pakistan Defense Day aimed at paying tribute to the country's armed forces.In the first part of the ...

 Oct 22 2014 - China Fiscal Revenue Rises 6.3% in SeptemberQatar News Agency
(MENAFN - QNA) China's fiscal revenue rose 6.3% year on year to 995.3 billion yuan about (162.6 billion US dollars) in September, quickening from a 6.1% rise in August, the Chinese Ministry of ...

 Oct 22 2014 - Tokyo Stocks End Sharply up WednesdayQatar News Agency
(MENAFN - QNA) Tokyo stocks ended sharply higher Wednesday, boosted by overnight rises in European and US stocks. The 225-issue Nikkei Stock Average rose 391.49 points, or 2.64%, from Tuesday to ...

 Oct 22 2014 - Cooperating Robots Developed in China-US ProjectQatar News Agency
(MENAFN - QNA) An award-winning collaboration between Chinese and American researchers has pointed the way forward for the use of cloud computing to link different robots and make them more ...

 Oct 22 2014 - Summary of Local News Released Tuesday - 3-Qatar News Agency
(MENAFN - QNA) - World Innovation Summit for Health (WISH) has appointed chairperson for the WISH Dementia Forum that will mull current challenges, innovation in care-giving, financial models and ...

 Oct 22 2014 - Ban Calls for Investigation into Israeli Attacks on UN Facilities in GazaQatar News Agency
(MENAFN - QNA) United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon called for a thorough investigation into incidents where UN facilities sustained hits and many innocent people were killed by the Israeli ...

more...


 






Google

Click to Apply

 
 

Middle East North Africa - Financial Network

MENAFN News Market Data Countries Tools Section  
 

Middle East North Africa - Financial Network
Arabic MENAFN

Main News
News By Industry
News By Country

IPO News
Islamic Finance News
Private Equity News

How-To Guides
Technology Section

Travel Section

Search News

Market Indices
Quotes & Charts

Global Indices
Arab Indices

US Markets Details

Commodoties

Oil & Energy

Currencies Cross Rates
Currencies Updates
Currency Converter

USA Stocks
Arab Stocks
 

Algeria 
Bahrain 
Egypt 
Iraq
Jordan 
Kuwait 
Lebanon
Morocco 
Oman 
Palestine
Qatar 
Saudi Arabia 
Syria
Tunisia 
UAE 
Yemen

Weather
Investment Game
Economic Calendar
Financial Glossary

My MENAFN
Portfolio Tracker

Voting

Financial Calculators

RSS Feeds [XML]

Corporate Monitor

Events

Real Estate
Submit Your Property

Arab Research
Buy a Research

Press Releases
Submit your PR

Join Newsletters


 
© 2000 menafn.com All Rights Reserved.  Terms of Service | Privacy Policy | Contact Us | Advertise | About MENAFN | Career Opportunities | Feedback | Help