afghanistan

TOPSHOTS An Afghan balloon vendor walks ...TOPSHOTS An Afghan balloon vendor walks along a street in Kabul on February 18, 2014. Some nine million Afghans or 36 percent of the population are living in "absolute poverty" while another 37 percent live barely above the poverty line, according to a UN report. AFP PHOTO/Nicolas ASFOURINICOLAS ASFOURI/AFP/Getty Images

Nicolas Asfouri/AFP

An Afghan balloon seller walks along a street in Kabul. About 9m Afghans, or 36% of the population, are living in ‘absolute poverty’ while another 37% t live barely above the poverty line, according to a UN report. 

An Afghan man pushes his cart at Shuhada...An Afghan man pushes his cart at Shuhada Lake in Kabul on February 10, 2014.   Afghanistan's economy is recovering from decades of conflict but despite the significant improvement in the last decade it is extremely poor, landlocked, and highly dependent on foreign aid.   AFP PHOTO/ Wakil KohsarWAKIL KOHSAR/AFP/Getty Images

Wakil Kohsar/AFP

An Afghan man pushes his cart along the shore of Shuhada lake in Kabul, Afghanistan

An Afghan child warms herself near a traditional "sandali" stove at her family's home in Herat on February 7, 2014. As winter sets in across Central Asia, many Afghans struggle to provide adequate food and shelter for their families.

Aref Karimi/AFP

An Afghan child warms herself near a traditional sandali stove at her family’s home in Herat, Afghanistan, on Friday. As winter sets in across Central Asia, finding adequate food and shelter is a struggle for many Afghans.

An Afghan resident walks during snowfall in Kabul on February 6, 2014. The Afghan capital has experienced its second heavy snowfall of the winter.

Shah Marai/AFP

An Afghan resident walks during snowfall in Kabul on Thursday. The Afghan capital has experienced its second heavy snowfall of the winter.

Afghan children play Ghursai, a traditional boy's game

Noorullah ShirzadaNoorullah Shirzada/AFP/Getty Images

Children play Ghursai, a traditional boy’s game, in the countryside on the outskirts of Jalalabad, Nangarhar province in Afghanistan 

ALTERNATE CROP - In this Friday, Jan. 24, 2014 photo, Afghan refugee girl, laiba Hazrat, 6, poses for a picture, while playing with other children in a slum on the outskirts of Islamabad, Pakistan. For more than three decades, Pakistan has been home to one of the worldís largest refugee communities: hundreds of thousands of Afghans who have fled the repeated wars and fighting their country has undergone. Since the 2002 U.S.-led invasion of Afghanistan, some 3.8 million Afghans have returned to their home country, according to the U.N.ís refugee agency.

Muhammed Muheisen/AP

Afghan refugee, laiba Hazrat, 6, in a slum on the outskirts of Islamabad, Pakistan. For more than three decades, Pakistan has been home to one of the world’s largest refugee communities of hundreds of thousands of Afghans who have fled the wars and fighting in their country. 

Afghan children weave a carpet at a traditional carpet factory in Herat.

Aref Karimi/AFP

Afghan children weave a carpet at a traditional carpet factory in Herat.

An Afghan child plays in the outskirts o...An Afghan child plays in the outskirts of Herat on January 23, 2014. Economic development is considered a vital weapon to stop the country from sinking back into civil war and to stem Islamist extremism after 100,000 international combat troops pull out.

Aref Karimi/AFP

A child plays on the outskirts of Herat, Afghanistan. Economic development is seen as vital in stopping the country from sinking back into civil war and in stemming Islamist extremism when 100,000 international troops pull out 

A soldier kisses goodbye during the depa...A soldier kisses goodbye during the departure of over 90 troops from the Eindhoven airbase near Eindhoven, on January 14, 2014, to Mazar-e-Sharif in Afghanistan. They will replace the already stationed Dutch F-16's Air Task Force in Kunduz.   AFP PHOTO / ANP / KOEN VAN WEEL   **

Koen Van Weel/AFP

A soldier kisses goodbye as more than 90 Dutch troops depart from Eindhoven airbase for Mazar-e-Sharif, Afghanistan, to replace forces stationed in Kunduz.

An Afghan family walks during sunset in

Aref Karimi/AFP/Getty Images

An Afghan family walks during sunset in Herat on Tuesday. Over a third of Afghans are living in abject poverty, a UN report said.

A member of the Afghan security forces watches burning NATO supply trucks after what police officials say was an attack by militants in the Torkham area...A member of the Afghan security forces watches burning NATO supply trucks after what police officials say was an attack by militants in the Torkham area near the Pakistani-Afghan border in Jalalabad Province December 18, 2013. The attack killed one police officer and wounded three others, according to the police. REUTERS/Parwiz

Pariz/Reuters

A member of the Afghan security forces watches burning Nato supply trucks after what police officials say was an attack by militants in the Torkham area near the Pakistani-Afghan border in Jalalabad Province. The attack killed one police officer and wounded three others, according to the police. 

REUTERS PICTURE HIGHLIGHT...ATTENTION EDITORS - REUTERS PICTURE HIGHLIGHT TRANSMITTED BY 1345 GMT ON DECEMBER 17, 2013    KAB201  Women arrive for treatment at a mobile clinic, provided by the Afghan Family Guidance Association (AFGA), in Kabul. REUTERS/Mohammad Ismail      REUTERS NEWS PICTURES HAS NOW MADE IT EASIER TO FIND THE BEST PHOTOS FROM THE MOST IMPORTANT STORIES AND TOP STANDALONES EACH DAY. Search for "TPX" in the IPTC Supplemental Category field or "IMAGES OF THE DAY" in the Caption field and you will find a selection of 80-100 of our daily Top Pictures.

Mohammed Ismail/Reuters

Women arrive for treatment at a mobile clinic provided by the Afghan Family Guidance Association, in Kabul 

Aisha carries coal to be used for cooking and heating from a brick-making factory in Jalalabad...Aisha 11, carries coal to be used for cooking and heating from a brick-making factory in Jalalabad December 17, 2013.

Parwiz/Reuters

Aisha 11, carries coal to be used for cooking and heating from a brick-making factory in Jalalabad, Afghanistan

Newly-graduated Afghan midwives attend a commencement ceremony at the Governor's House in Jalalabad, Nangarhar province. Some 40 midwives graduated in the ceremony after undergoing a two and half year midwifery programme.

Noorullah Shirzada/AFP/Getty Images

Newly qualified midwives attend a commencement ceremony at the Governor’s House in Jalalabad, Nangarhar Province, Afghanistan. About 40 midwives graduated after undergoing a two and half year midwifery programme.

Afghanistan Saffron...epa03968559 A picture made available on 28 November 2013 shows Afghan women collecting Saffron flowers from the feilds in Gozara district of Herat, Afghanistan, 27 November 2013. Saffron has been indicated as an alternative to opium, while the price and demand for it is increasing day by day. Saffron is one of the highly prized spices known since antiquity for its color, flavor and medicinal properties.  EPA/JALIL REZAYEE

Jalil Rezayee/EPA

Afghan women collecting saffron flowers from fields in the Gozara district of Herat. Saffron is prized for its colour, flavour and medicinal properties. It has been indicated as an alternative to opium, and the price and demand for it is increasing. 

Members of the Afghan Loya Jirga attend a meeting in Kabul, Afghanistan, Thursday, Nov. 21, 2013. Afghan President Hamid Karzai has told a gathering of elders that he supports signing a security deal with the United States if safety and security conditions are met. Karzai spoke as the 2,500-member national consultative council of Afghan elders known as the Loya Jirga started in Kabul on Thursday. The four-day meeting will discuss the bilateral security pact that defines the role of thousands of U.S. troops who will remain after the NATO combat mission ends in 2014.

Rahmat Gul/AP

Members of the Afghan Loya Jirga attend a meeting in Kabul, Afghanistan. President Hamid Karzai has told a gathering of elders that he supports signing a security deal with the US if safety and security conditions are met.

Qudrat, 18, right, poses for a photograph as he works at a charcoal shop on the outskirts of Kabul, Afghanistan, Monday, Nov. 4, 2013. As winter is approaching, wood and charcoal are getting expensive among all other necessities for most Afghans.

Rahmat Gul/AP

Qudrat, who works at a charcoal shop on the outskirts of Kabul, Afghanistan, on Monday.

An Afghan refugee boy and his sister enjoy a ride on an improvised swing, in a poor neighborhood on the outskirts of Islamabad, Pakistan, Thursday, Oct. 31, 2013. Pakistan hosts over 1.6 million registered Afghans, the largest and most protracted refugee population in the world, according to the U.N. refugee agency, thousands of them still live without electricity, running water and other basic services.

Muhammed Muheisen/AP

An Afghan refugee boy and his sister enjoy a ride on an improvised swing, in a poor neighbourhood on the outskirts of Islamabad, Pakistan. Pakistan hosts over 1.6 million registered Afghans, the largest and most protracted refugee population in the world, according to the UN refugee agency. Thousands of them still live without electricity, running water and other basic services. 

Afghanistan women health...epa03930038 Afghan women wait to receive medical treatment at a local hospital in Kabul, Afghanistan, 30 October 2013. In rural areas of Afghanistan women are not allowed to seek medical help from a male doctor. Afghanistan has the second highest maternal mortality rate in the world where poor health conditions and malnutrition made pregnancy and childbirth exceptionally dangerous for Afghan women.  EPA/S. SABAWOON

S.Sabawoon/EPA

Afghan women wait to receive medical treatment at a local hospital in Kabul, Afghanistan. In rural areas women are not allowed to seek medical help from a male doctor. Afghanistan has the second-highest maternal mortality rate in the world. 

Taliban militants surrender their weapons in Herat...epa03920206 Former Taliban militants stand behind an rusty old light machine gun as they surrender their weapons under a US-backed Afghan government amnesty program, in Herat, Afghanistan, 23 October 2013. Hundreds of anti-government militants have so far surrendered to the government under an amnesty program launched by Afghan President Hamid Karzai back in 2004. Taliban-led militants have been waging a bloody war against Afghan and NATO forces for a decade, often infiltrating Afghan security forces and carrying out deadly attacks on NATO and Afghan forces.  EPA/JALIL REZAYEE

Jalil Rezayee/EPA

Former Taliban militants stand behind a rusty old light machine gun as they surrender their weapons under a US-backed Afghan government amnesty programme, in Herat, Afghanistan on Wednesday. Hundreds of anti-government militants have surrendered to the government under an amnesty programme launched in 2004 by Hamid Karzai, Afghan president.