Local officials in western Herat province on Tuesday [8 January 2019] said that the third phase of Khawaf-Herat railroad has been completed and that the project will be inaugurated in the near future.
The fourth phase of the project will be implemented soon too, said officials.
Source: Third Phase Of Khawaf-Herat Railroad To Be Launched, Nasir Salehi, Tolo News, 8 January 2019
Worth a link just for the headline: Greater Central Asia to be entangled by railway octopus, by Victoria Panfilova, columnist of Nezavisimaya Gazeta, specially for Vestnik Kavkaza, 19 December 2019.
A copy of the programme for the official opening of the Khyber Pass railway on 2 November 1925.
The Afghanistan Railway Authority’s hitherto dormant Twitter account sprang into life today.
انتقال کالاها از طریق خط آهن بندر حیرتان
اداره خط آهن افغانستان زمینه واردات و صادرات کالاها را از طریق بندر حیرتان به آسیایی میانه فراهم میکند و بهای انتقال این کالاها را برای بازرگانان کاهش خواهد داد…https://t.co/jyZENFEy9Q pic.twitter.com/PsRO7FCaJ6
— Afghanistan Railway Authority (@ARA_AFG) October 30, 2018
An article about travelling around Turkmenistan by train, from Wilbur’s Travels’ On Track website. With all too rare photos of Turkmen railways.
Introducing Acting Chief of Staff of ARA
Engr. Mohammad Zeb Montazer Maseed, on Tuesday (Sep 25, 2018) was officially introduced as the Acting Chief of Staff of the Afghanistan Railway Authority (ARA) by the Leadership Board to the employees of the aforementioned office.
Engr. Abdul Bari Siddiqi, Technical Deputy of ARA, congratulated the new Acting Chief of Staff, said that engr. Montazer Maseed is a professional and active head of the department. He also added that ARA has a special focus on increasing the capacity of its staff, which is priority development task of the head.
Engr. Montazer Maseed thanked ARA for their support and given opportunity as Acting Chief of Staff, and assured that he will not spare any attempt for the development of ARA and its personnel.
Engr. Mohammad Zeb Montazer Maseed having a Master degree in architecture, has previously worked with Independent Election Commission, and Political Division of the United Nations Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA).
Source: Afghanistan Railway Authority, 26 September 2018
CEO of ARA Attends SCO Meeting in Uzbekistan
Mr. Mohammad Yamma Shams, DG & CEO of Afghanistan Railway Authority (ARA) on Sep. 20-21, 2018, attended the first meeting of Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) member countries’ railway heads in Toshkent city of Uzbekistan.
Meeting was participated by the representatives of the member countries (India, Kazakhstan, China, Kyrgyzstan, Pakistan, Russia, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan) and the heads of the observer countries (Afghanistan, Belarus, Iran, Mongolia).
Railway heads of the member countries highlighted the importance and significance of the meeting, and discussed the issues related to the growth of transportation services, increase of opportunities in the railway sector development, customs and tariff policy, as well the efforts to create new international corridors in the territory of member countries.
Mohammad Yama Shams DG & CEO of Afghanistan Railway Authority (ARA), emphasized on the development of railway projects in the region and in terms of its geographic location, mentioned the significance of Afghanistan as a bridge connecting Central Asia with South Asia.
Source: Afghanistan Railway Authority, 23 September 2018
Conflicting media reports suggest that Tajikistan might, or might not, have pulled out of the Turkmenistan – Afghanistan – Tajikistan railway project.
On 22 September Associated Press reported1 that ambassador to Uzbekistan Imom Sodiq Ashourboyzoda had said that Tajikistan had decided to indefinitely postpone the project. The decision had been taken because improved relations with Uzbekistan since the death of its President Karimov2 meant the project was no long feasible. The line would have enabled rail traffic to reach Tajikistan without transiting Uzbekistan.
AP reported that Turkmenistan’s Foreign Ministry said on 22 September that it has formally notified Tajikistan that it did not understand the statement.
The Diplomat published some analysis.3
However, on 25 September Aki Press said4 that Radio Ozodi had reported that a high-level official in the Ministry of Transport of Tajikistan had said work on the project was continuing, Tajik authorities had identified a route and Afghanistan should decide on the route of its section of the line. “We want to have an alternative to the railway running through Uzbekistan,” the transport ministry official reportedly stated.
- Turkmenistan surprised by Tajikistan’s rollback on railroad, 22 September 2018 ↩
- Uzbekistan – Tajikistan rail link reopens, Railway Gazette, 12 March 2018 ↩
- Did Tajikistan Just Ditch a Rail Project With Turkmenistan?, Catherine Putz, The Diplomat, 25 September 2018 ↩
- Tajikistan Transport Ministry says work on Turkmenistan-Afghanistan-Tajikistan railway ongoing, Aki Press, 25 September 2018. ↩