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Work on $12m road project gets under way in Kunar

Paroon, July 6, 2007 (Pajhwok Afghan News): Construction work on a road linking the Nuristan capital with Kamdesh district got under way here on Friday, a senior official said.

Governor Tamim Nuristani told Pajhwok Afghan News the 72-kilometre road with a seven-meter width was being built at the cost of $12 million provided by the US-led Provincial Reconstruction Team (PRT).

Currently, residents of western districts of the province had to trek to central parts of Nuristan for nearly 96 hours, via Nangarhar, Kunar and Laghman provinces, the governor said while referring to commuter hardships.

Once the Paroon-Kamdesh road was paved in 18 months by an American company, Nuristani added, the arduous journey would be reduced to 27 hours.

Syed Niamatullah Sayar, an official of the US road-building firm, revealed more than 500 workers from regional shuras were associated with the project. The locals would also shoulder responsibility for road security, he added.

On March 22, he pointed out, the same company launched work on a 47-kilometre road - costing 9.5 million dollars granted by the PRT - in a western part of the province.

Similarly, the PRT was financing the construction of roads in Wama, Noor Gram and Do Aaba districts of the remote eastern province. Sayar assured all these projects would be completed in a year and a half.