Photo By Staff Sgt. Ryan Sheldon | Front row from left: Mohammad Shoieb, Huquq (small claims advisor); Fareydon, chief judge of Spin Boldak; Mohammad Aziz, prosecutor; Azizulrahman, a judge; Atiqullah, a judicial clerk. Back row from left: U.S. Army Staff Sgt. Fatimah Muhammad; U.S. Navy Lt. Darren Myers; Obaid Gardizy all pose for a group photo in front of the new courthouse in Spin Boldak district, Afghanistan, Nov. 26, 2012. Muhammad, Myers and Obaid are part of the Rule of Law team at Forward Operating Base Spin Boldak.
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SPIN BOLDAK, Afghanistan - A new courthouse was recently completed in Spin Boldak district to assist local villagers with legal disputes and bring hope for a stronger judicial system. The courthouse marks a milestone in the progression of a more self-sustaining Afghan legal system and court officials hope the building will be completely furnished by the end of December.
The structure is located near the district center and is the only courthouse in the district. Prior to its construction, there was no official justice building where villagers could receive assistance for legal matters.
The building’s modern and colorful design allows it to stand out in an area where normal living structures are the predominant style.
“The previous courthouse was small and couldn’t facilitate our needs,” said Azizulrahman, a district judge in Spin Boldak. “It’s very important that we have a courthouse in Spin Boldak to establish law. Our goal is to inform villagers the courthouse is here to assist them with their legal issues and help solve problems.”
Courthouse officials stressed the building’s location near the Pakistan border will help mitigate typical issues the area has faced. Some issues such as illegal drug and weapons trafficking are common near the border.
“There are a lot of disputes involving security near the border,” Azizulrahman said. “The presence of a new courthouse will help us maintain security and improve the quality of life for villagers.”
While the courthouse may not be open yet, villagers from other districts have already sought out legal advice from officials. Court officials currently work out of their temporary office until the new building is completely furnished.
“We remain positive and look forward to working in the new building, as we progress toward a more stable Afghanistan,” said Mohammad Azaz, a prosecutor in Spin Boldak.
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FORWARD OPERATING BASE SPIN BOLDAK, AF
This work, New courthouse a beacon of hope for Spin Boldak, by SSG Ryan Sheldon, identified by DVIDS, is free of known copyright restrictions under U.S. copyright law.