Afghanistan inaugurates hydropower dam in western province

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KABUL, March 24 (Xinhua) — Afghanistan’s President Mohammad Ashraf Ghani on Wednesday inaugurated a key hydropower dam in the western province Nimroz, which is expected to boost economy and agriculture in the land-locked Asian country, the state-run National Radio Television Afghanistan (RTA) reported.

Ghani was joined by hundreds of Afghan officials, dignitaries and locals at the inauguration ceremony held near the Kamal Khan Dam located in Chahar Burjak district, about 95 km south of Zaraj, capital of Nimroz.

“Inauguration of Kamal Khan Dam is a historic moment of emotion and pride for Afghans. The project will irrigate lands and light up homes. The dam is a generator of hopefulness and confidence in the future of Afghanistan,” Ghani said at the ceremony broadcast live by the RTA.

The construction work of the dam was initiated in 1970s but affected by the prolonged conflicts in the country.

“Hearts of all Afghans are beating today for Kamal Khan Dam, success in construction of Kamal Khan Dam was a big victory for Afghanistan, which is a symbol of national unity,” Ghani said.

The dam, built on the Helmand River, is capable of irrigating 174,000 hectares of crop land. It will also produce electricity power to bring light to hundreds of thousands of Afghan households in the far-flung province, about 790 km southwest of capital Kabul.

The dam has a storage capacity of 52 million cubic meters of water and will create over 650,000 job opportunities.

Scores of casualties have been reported in the Afghan national security forces in protecting the dam’s construction from the attacks by militants, reports said.

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