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 You are in: Under Secretary for Political Affairs > Bureau of South and Central Asian Affairs > Releases > Press Releases > 2004
Press Statement

Kabul, Afghanistan
March 20, 2004


The United States Embassy Celebrates the Inauguration of Kabul Green Week

Released by Office of Public Affairs-U.S. Embassy Afghanistan

Kabul, March 20 - U.S. Ambassador to Afghanistan Zalmay Khalilzad planting a tree on Afghan New Year's Day, at the inauguration of Kabul Green Week, an initiative to educate Kabul's citizens on how to preserve and protect the environment. The United States government - through the U.S. Agency for International Development - has contributed almost $1 million towards tree planting to restore the natural beauty of Afghanistan's capital, Kabul.  State Department Photo The first week of Nawruz, the New Year in Afghanistan, will begin with the planting of 850,000 trees in the city of Kabul. Organized by the Afghan Conservation Corps (through the United Nations Office for Project Services) and the Afghan Ministry of Irrigation, Water Resources and Environment, Kabul Green Week began today with the planting of trees on Nader Khan Hill by President Karzai, Ambassador Khalilzad and several Afghan Ministers.

Kabul was once a green city, but years of war destroyed much of Kabul’s beauty. “I remember Darlaman Road, which was once lined with lush trees. Not one tree stands now,” Ambassador Khalilzad remarked today.

The United States is immensely proud to be a part of this restoration of Kabul. The U.S. Government, through the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), has contributed over $990,000 towards the initiative to green Kabul. This money was used to purchase seedlings and put needy Afghans to work greening the city. 170,000 of the trees that will be planted this week were imported directly from the United States.

Events are planned throughout the week to educate the citizens of Kabul on how to improve their environment, culminating with a community fair in Shar-e-naw Park on Friday, March 26. Many Kabul residents will also receive a tree to plant outside their homes as a symbol of Nawruz and prosperity.

Ambassador Khalilzad stated that he hopes Green Week will become a nation-wide, annual event, from which Afghans in rural areas as well as the cities will benefit.

This effort is a testament to the unity of the Transitional Islamic State of Afghanistan and the United States. “Together,” Ambassador Khalilzad said, “we can create not only a more sound and democratic Afghanistan, but also a more beautiful Afghanistan.”


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