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22 March 2005

U.S. Pledges $200,000 to Support Reforestation of Afghanistan

U.S. envoy Khalilzad urges Afghan youth to protect environment

U.S. Ambassador to Afghanistan Zalmay Khalilzad announced a $200,000 U.S. pledge to the Afghan Conservation Corps to support a program to reforest Afghanistan, according to a statement from the embassy in Kabul March 21.

Following is the text of the embassy statement:

 

(begin text)

US Pledges $200,000 To Kabul Greening Week

Millions more to go to national reforestation

Kabul March 21, 2004-US Ambassador and Special Presidential Envoy Zalmay Khalilzad today announced that the United States had pledged $200,000 to the Afghan Conservation Corps (ACC) in support of Kabul Greening Week.  The Ambassador also announced his support for President Bush's recent request to the US Congress for an additional $10 million for reforestation in Afghanistan. The Ambassador made the announcement at a tree planting ceremony held in front of Eid Gah Mosque at which President Karzai, and other dignitaries planted trees.

In addition to these funds, the Ambassador said that Senator Hilary Clinton (D-NY) had launched a campaign for a Green Afghanistan.  The program will add 80,000 trees to Afghan forests by developing family-owned orchards, nurseries, and forestry businesses.  Combined Forces Command Afghanistan (CFC-A) has also agreed to contribute 150,000 tree saplings to the Ministry of Defense for planting this spring.

"I call on the youth of Afghanistan to take an interest in your country's environment, and get involved in the greening of Afghanistan," said Ambassador Khalilzad.  "As the youth grow into a population of free men and women, we hope that the trees they pant and nurture will grow with them."

(end text)

(Distributed by the Bureau of International Information Programs, U.S. Department of State. Web site: http://usinfo.state.gov)



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