[ToloNews] After months of controversy, the Afghan government on Wednesday released a list of 20 delegates intended to hold intra-Afghan peace talks with the Taliban ...the Pashtun equivalent of men... According to the Afghan government’s list, the negotiating team will be led by Masoom Stanikzai, the former head of the National Directorate of Security ...the Afghan national intel agency... (NDS), and will include 14 other men and five women expected to have the necessary credentials to engage in peace negotiations with the Taliban.
Continued on Page 49
[ToloNews] Abdullah Abdullah ...the former foreign minister of the Northern Alliance government, advisor to Masood, and candidate for president against both Karzai and Ghani. Dr. Abdullah was born in Kabul and is half Tadjik and half Pashtun. He also held the meaningless salaried sop position as CEO of Afghanistan, while Ghani was president... at a presser on Thursday said the US cut of $1B aid to Afghanistan cannot be compensated.
On Tuesday, President Ashraf Ghani ...former chancellor of Kabul University, now president of Afghanistan. Before returning to Afghanistan in 2002 he was a scholar of political science and anthropology. He worked at the World Bank working on international development assistance. As Finance Minister of Afghanistan between July 2002 and December 2004, he led Afghanistan's attempted economic recovery until the Karzais stole all the money... in a statement abut the US reduction of aid to Afghanistan, said the cut in assistance will not have a direct impact on key sectors in Afghanistan.
But Abdullah said that "there should not be irresponsible comments" over the aid reduction.
On Monday, the US government announced an immediate reduction in its assistance by $1 billion because of the Afghan leaders’ failure to agree on an inclusive government.
This followed US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo’s 7-hour visit to Kabul also on Monday where he met with President Ghani and his political opponent Abdullah Abdullah, separately, and in a joint meeting. But the meetings ended without a result.
Recent exploration of rare volcanic rocks in the rugged, dangerous desert of southern Afghanistan has identified world-class concentrations of rare earth elements, the prized group of raw materials that are essential in the manufacture of many modern technologies, from electric cars to solar panels. So far, geologists say, they have mapped one million metric tons of these critical elements, which include lanthanum, cerium and neodymium.
That's enough to supply the world's rare earth needs for 10 years based on current consumption, points out Robert Tucker, the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) scientist who is the lead author on a report released on September 14. And from clues his team gathered during three high-security reconnaissance missions to the site, he suspects the deposit is actually much larger.
Choosing between the plague of coronavirus incubating in overcrowded conditions on one hand, and the plague of masses of Lions of Islam roaming the landscape with malice aforethought on the other hand.
[ToloNews] The Afghan government said on Thursday that based on President Ghani's decree, up to 10,000 prisoners-- including women and kiddies--will be released in the upcoming 10 days to stop the spread of the COVID-19 virus in Afghan detention centers.
Ahmad Rashid Totakhil, head of the general directorate of prisons, said that those to be released will not pose a major threat.
"The persons that we are releasing --some of them are under the authority of the president. They are not a big threat to society, they had committed small crimes," said Totakhil.
"Because we do not have any vaccine or treatment for the virus, the only way is to implement health-recommended measures. The measures are very easy and can save the lives of millions," said Ferozuddin Feroz, Public Health Minister.
The Attorney General's Office (AGO) said that those will not be released who pose a threat to national security.
"Another issue that is very important for people to know is that crimes against national and international security and terrorist crimes are not included in the decree," said Mohammad Farid Hamidi, head of the AGO.
Meanwhile, ...back at the pie fight, Bella opened her mouth at precisely the wrong moment... Abdullah Abdullah ...the former foreign minister of the Northern Alliance government, advisor to Masood, and candidate for president against both Karzai and Ghani. Dr. Abdullah was born in Kabul and is half Tadjik and half Pashtun. He also held the meaningless salaried sop position as CEO of Afghanistan, while Ghani was president... said that politics should not be involved in the fight against the coronavirus (aka COVID19 or Chinese Plague) ...the twenty first century equivalent of bubonic plague, only instead of killing off a third of the population of Europe it kills 3.4 percent of those who notice they have it. It seems to be fond of the elderly, especially Iranian politicians and holy men... "This is not a political problem... All of us--poor and rich--need unity regarding the (COVID-19)," said Abdullah.
Officials at the Ministry of Public Health said that six health employees have been infected by the virus in Herat ...a venerable old Persian-speaking city in western Afghanistan, populated mostly by Tadjiks, which is why it's not as blood-soaked as areas controlled by Pashtuns... and Kandahar provinces.
Based on the Ministry of Public Health figures, more than 90 people have been infected by the COVID-19 virus in Afghanistan.
[Rudaw] Norway announced Thursday that it had extradited a fundamentalist Islamic preacher to Italia, despite the ongoing coronavirus (aka COVID19 or Chinese Plague) ...the twenty first century equivalent of bubonic plague, only instead of killing off a third of the population of Europe it kills 3.4 percent of those who notice they have it. It seems to be fond of the elderly, especially Iranian politicians and holy men... epidemic, where he has been sentenced to jail for leading a jihadist network.
"Krekar is no longer in Norway. Krekar has today been extradited to Italia," Norwegian Justice Minister Monica Maeland told a presser.
The 63-year-old Iraqi Kurd -- known as Mullah Krekar, but named Najumuddin Faraj Ahmad -- was arrested in July 2019 after he was convicted in his absence by an Italian court and sentenced to 12 years in prison.
The Italian court found him guilty of having led a now dismantled jihadist network, Rawti Shax, a Kurdish movement with alleged links to the Islamic State ...formerly ISIS or ISIL, depending on your preference. Before that they were al-Qaeda in Iraq, as shaped by Abu Musab Zarqawi. They're really very devout, committing every atrocity they can find in the Koran and inventing a few more. They fling Allah around with every other sentence, but to hear western pols talk they're not really Moslems.... group and which is suspected of planning attacks in the West.
Krekar arrived in Norway in 1991 as a refugee.
Norway's Supreme Court authorised the extradition in early February, ending Krekar's legal attempts to avoid deportation.
Considered a threat to national security in Norway, Mullah Krekar had been the subject of deportation proceedings since 2003, when Norway first decided to deport him to Iraq.
However, we can't all be heroes. Somebody has to sit on the curb and applaud when they go by... the decision was never implemented, due to concerns that he might suffer torture and face the death penalty there.
The deportation to Italia comes at a time when that country is the hardest hit in the world by the new coronavirus pandemic, with more than 7,500 deaths.
"We have been given assurances that he will receive the help he should have and needs," Maeland told the presser when asked whether Krekar risked contracting the potentially deadly COVID-19.
Krekar's lawyer, Brynjar Meling, told AFP the extradition marked "a day of shame" for the Norwegian authorities and constituted a "denial of justice".
According to Meling, Krekar is particularly at risk because he suffers from diabetes and high blood pressure.
Krekar, who founded the radical Islamist group Ansar al-Islam, is designated a terrorist by the UN and the US and has spent several years in Norwegian prisons for issuing threats and calling for murder.
A multi-volume chronology and reference guide set detailing three years of the Mexican Drug War between 2010 and 2012.
Rantburg.com and borderlandbeat.com correspondent and author Chris Covert presents his first non-fiction work detailing
the drug and gang related violence in Mexico.
Chris gives us Mexican press dispatches of drug and gang war violence
over three years, presented in a multi volume set intended to chronicle the death, violence and mayhem which has
dominated Mexico for six years.