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Know about Mother’s Day: May 8

Mother's Day is a time to celebrate and appreciate all the work women do

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Mother's Day
Mother's Day, Wikimedia Commons

Sunday (May 8) is Mother’s Day in the U.S. and scores of countries around the world.

Mother’s Day is a time to celebrate and appreciate all the work women do.

Families traditionally give their mothers flowers and a fancy dinner to commemorate the day.

U.S. President Barack Obama honored his wife Michelle in his weekly address, thanking her “for the remarkable way she does the most important job: being a mom.”

While the U.S. Congress made Mother’s Day an official holiday in 1914, Obama urged the current legislative body to pass more substantial measures to honor women, starting with several of his administration’s initiatives.

‘Give it meaning’

Clara's Card.jpg
A Mother holding Mother’s Day greeting card , Wikimedia Commons

“If Congress can make a holiday, surely they can back it up with the things that give it meaning,” Obama said.

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“That includes paid maternity and paternity leave, sick leave, accommodations for workers who are pregnant, good health care, affordable child care, flexibility at work, equal pay, and a decent minimum wage. We ask our mothers to do more than their fair share of just about everything. Making sure that they’re treated fairly is the least we can do,” the president added.

Anna Jarvis, the founder of Mother’s Day in 1908, began the effort as a way of honoring the sacrifices mothers make for their children.

Anna jarvis.jpg
Anna Jarvis, Wikimedia Commons

Jarvis had originally envisioned Mother’s Day as a day of personal celebration between mothers and families. However, when the day became an official holiday, it was not long before florists, card companies and other merchants pounced to capitalize on the day’s  popularity.

Jarvis was disgusted and disowned the holiday before her death in 1948. She had even lobbied the government to remove the holiday from the American calendar.

But Mother’s Day persists. It is one of the most popular holidays and one of the biggest for consumer spending. (VOA)

  • Pritam Go Green

    All over the world Mother’s day should be celebrated with proper enthusiasm and respect. Now It’s our time to give back something to our beloved mothers .

  • Akanksha Sharma

    “All that I am or ever hope to be, I owe to my angel mother.” ― Abraham Lincoln

Next Story

U.S. Envoy Advances Peace Talk Efforts In Afghanistan

The U.S. fulfilled a major Taliban demand last year of talking directly to the Americans, in an effort to jumpstart a peace process.

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USA, afghanistan, taliban, peace talks, pakistan
U.S. special envoy for peace in Afghanistan, Zalmay Khalilzad, talks with local reporters at the U.S. embassy in Kabul, Afghanistan, Nov. 18, 2018. VOA

Zalmay Khalilzad, the man responsible for overseeing America’s negotiations with the Afghan Taliban, arrived Tuesday night in Kabul, after making stops in India, the United Arab Emirates, and China. He is expected to visit Islamabad next.

His outreach to regional players continues despite what seems like a setback in talks with the Taliban.

“The [dialogue] process has halted for now so the venue and the date for a future meeting are not known,” a senior Taliban official who is privy to the developments confirmed to VOA earlier this week when asked whether their peace talks with the U.S. were still on track.

Talks scheduled with the Taliban in Saudi Arabia earlier this month were called off by the insurgent group after it came under pressure by the host government to meet with representatives of the current Afghan government.

Afghanistan, Peace Talks
A general view of the Taliban office in Doha, Qatar, May 2, 2015, site of several past negotioations with the Taliban. VOA

The insurgent group pushed to change the venue to Doha, Qatar, but later canceled those talks as well over disagreements on the agenda.

The last significant round of talks between Khalilzad and the Taliban was held in December in Abu Dhabi. Pakistan, Saudi Arabia and the host government also took part in that round.

The Afghan government sent a delegation to Abu Dhabi in hopes of joining the talks, but the Taliban refused to meet them.

The group so far has resisted pressure from multiple actors, including the U.S., to meet with the Kabul administration, calling it a “puppet” regime unable to deliver on their demands.

The U.S. goal, according to a statement issued by its embassy in Kabul, is to “encourage the parties to come together at the negotiating table to reach a political settlement.”

Afghanistan, Peace Talks
Afghanistan’s President Ashraf Ghani, right in backgroud, and U.S. special envoy for peace in Afghanistan, Zalmay Khalilzad, left in background, meet in Kabul, Nov.10, 2018. VOA

Khalilzad will meet with President Ashraf Ghani, CEO Abdullah Abdullah, and political leaders to “discuss the next steps in U.S. efforts to support and facilitate an Afghan-led and Afghan-owned peace process,” the statement added.

 

A feud among Saudi Arabia, the UAE and Qatar also seems to be damaging the process, say various media reports. According to the Reuters news agency, Saudi and UAE diplomats refused to take part in any meeting held in Qatar, where the Taliban maintain an unofficial political office. The two countries severed ties with Qatar in 2017, accusing the Gulf state of funding militants – a charge Doha denies.

In December, it was reported that President Donald Trump told the Pentagon to prepare for the withdrawal of 7,000 American military personnel from Afghanistan, which would reduce the U.S. presence in the country by half.

Also Read: Peace Talks With The U.S. Stalled: Taliban

The U.S. fulfilled a major Taliban demand last year of talking directly to the Americans, in an effort to jumpstart a peace process. Since then, several rounds of negotiations between the two have been held, albeit without the Kabul administration.

Meanwhile, security in Afghanistan continues to present a major challenge. An attack in Kabul Monday killed several people and wounded dozens of others. (VOA)