Thursday, April 17, 2014 Local time: 08:25



About Gandhara

Gandhara, an ancient region comprising parts of today's Afghanistan and Pakistan, inspires this page, which provides foreign policy audiences with reporting, analysis and commentary direct from our local correspondents in Afghanistan and Pakistan with the aim of promoting peace in the region. 
 

Interview

Afghan presidential candidate and former Foreign Minister Abdullah Abdullah leads in the preliminary vote count issued on April 13.

Afghanistan's Abdullah Vows To Make 'Meritocratic Appointments'

Afghan presidential candidate Abdullah Abdullah says he will not exclude anyone, including his fiercest rivals, from government if he wins Afghanistan's presidential election. More


Multimedia

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Vox Pop: Afghan Voters Share Hopes For Peace And Stabilityi
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05.04.2014
As Afghans cast their ballots for a new president on April 5, many voters expressed their optimism that the election can bring positive changes, including improved security in the country. (RFE/RL's Radio Free Afghanistan)
Video

Video Vox Pop: Afghan Voters Share Hopes For Peace And Stability

As Afghans cast their ballots for a new president on April 5, many voters expressed their optimism that the election can bring positive changes, including improved security in the country. (RFE/RL's Radio Free Afghanistan)
Video

Video Afghans Vote In Mazar-e-Sharif

Afghan voters lined up outside polling stations in the northern city of Mazar-e-Sharif as voting opened in the country's presidential election. Local officials said that the early turnout was higher than expected. (RFE/RL's Radio Free Afghanistan)
Video

Video Flash Analysis: Afghanistan's Presidential Election

As Afghanistan prepares to vote for a new president on April 5, RFE/RL's regional director for Afghanistan and Pakistan, Akbar Ayazi, discusses the front-running candidates, the shaky security situation, and the measures put in place to help ensure a free and fair vote.
Video

Video Afghan Women Hope For Change As Election Nears

As Afghans prepare to vote in the country's presidential election on April 5, some female voters feel that the stakes are especially high for them. They are hoping that the election results will bring stability and prosperity, and preserve the rights that Afghan women have gained.
Video

Video Afghans Mourn Death Of Vice President Fahim

A memorial ceremony has been held in Kabul for Afghan Vice President Mohammad Qasim Fahim, who died on March 9. He was known for his role as a top commander of the Northern Alliance during its fight against Taliban rule. The Afghan government has declared three days of national mourning for Fahim.

Culture

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  • A group of fighters from the Baloch Liberation Army pose with their weapons around the campfire.
  • A child sits inside a makeshift school building built by Baloch refugees who fled the violence that engulfed their remote rural villages.
  • The Kech valley to the north of Gwadar is representative of the beautiful but desolate landscapes of the Makran coastal region of Balochistan.
  • An elderly woman is one of many Baloch people to have moved from a rural region to the area surrounding Gwadar port in search of work.
  • On the outskirts of the port town of Gwadar, a Baloch woman returns to her home, built primarily from branches and cloth rags.
  • A girl in Quetta wears a bandana supporting the Baloch Liberation Army, a nationalist militant group.
  • A rally in Quetta to mark the day in 1948 when Pakistan annexed a short-lived independent Baloch state.
  • Residents from a nearby village visit a guerrilla encampment belonging to the Baloch Liberation Army.
  • Not far from the strategic Bolan Pass, a member of the Baloch Liberation Army keeps watch.
  • Outside the front door of the late tribal leader Nawab Akbar Khan Bugti's home, several Bugti tribesmen stand guard, while others wait for an audience with their chieftain.
  • Insurgent fighters belonging to the Baloch nationalist movement sit in the back of a pick-up truck near the town of Dera Bugti.
  • An AK 47 that has been personalized by its owner, a member of the Baloch Liberation Army.
  • Imdad Baloch once headed up a Baloch student movement before he was abducted and tortured by agents from a Pakistani military intelligence agency.
  • During the intense afternoon heat, Baloch Liberation Army guerillas travel along the floor of a valley in territory under their control.

Balochistan: Portraits Of Life On The Brink

Balochistan, a vast, resource-rich desert region spanning Pakistan and Iran is a hotbed of separatist conflict. In his new book titled "Balochistan at a Crossroads," journalist Willem Marx and photographer Marc Watterlot documented the suffering and struggles of Baluch people living in underdeveloped and marginalized communities in both Pakistan and Iran.

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Informed Comment

Debating Room

Pakistani journalists protest outside the parliament.

Journalists In Tribal Areas Demand Protection

Reporters and human rights campaigners in Pakistan's northwestern tribal areas have called for security as the region’s protracted conflict takes a heavy toll on their professional and personal lives. More

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News

Press Room

March 24, 2014

In Pakistan, Radio Mashaal Heeds Call For Medical Care

RFE/RL’s Radio Mashaal call-in program supports temporary clinics in Pakistan’s remotest regions.
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March 21, 2014

On Norouz, Radio Azadi Names 'Person Of The Year'

As part of its seventh annual celebration of the Persian New Year, RFE/RL’s Afghan Service recognized Ihsanullah Bayat as this year’s outstanding benefactor.
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