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Posts Tagged ‘Afghanistan’

Report: US Building Secret Drone Bases in Africa, Arabian Peninsula

September 21, 2011 Comments off

voanews

The United States is reported to be expanding a secret drone program in east Africa and the Arabian peninsula in order to gather intelligence and strike al-Qaida-linked militants in Somalia and Yemen.

Citing U.S. defense officials, The Washington Post reported that the U.S. is building a new military installation to host the unmanned aircraft in Ethiopia, where drones can more easily attack members of the militant group al-Shabab that is fighting for control of neighboring Somalia.

The report also said the U.S. has re-opened a drone base in the Seychelles, an island nation in the Indian Ocean, where a small Read more…

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US to lose its base in Kyrgyzstan

August 17, 2011 Comments off

axisoflogic

Kyrgyzstan is not going to prolong its agreement with Washington, which entitles the US to use Manas Transit Center to supply its forces in Afghanistan, after it expires in 2014, the republic’s Prime Minister Almazbek Atambayev has said.

“… In full compliance with our commitments, we will inform the American side on the termination of the contract six months prior to its expiry,” the Central Asian state’s premier said in an interview with Rosbalt agency. Kyrgyzstan plans to turn the Center, formerly known as Manas Air Base, into a civil transportation hub. Both Russian and Western investors would be welcome to participate in the creation of the facility, Atambayev added.

The military installation has been used as a Read more…

Religious violence, abuse growing: world study

August 10, 2011 Comments off

afp

WASHINGTON — Religious-linked violence and abuse rose around the world between 2006 and 2009, with Christians and Muslims the most common targets, according to a private US study released Tuesday.

“Over the three-year period studied, incidents of either government or social harassment were reported against Christians in 130 countries (66 percent) and against Muslims in 117 countries (59 percent),” said the Pew Research Center’s Forum on Religion and Public Life study.

In 2009, governments in 101 nations, more than half the globe, used at least some measure of force against religious groups. A year earlier only 91 nations had done so, the report said.

As of 2009, more than 2.2 billion people, or nearly a third of the world’s population of 6.9 billion, lived in countries where religious restrictions had risen substantially since Read more…

Copter Downed by Taliban Fire; Elite U.S. Unit Among Dead

August 6, 2011 Comments off

nytimes.com

S. Sabawoon/European Pressphoto Agency

Afghan insurgents on Saturday said they had shot down a Chinook transport helicopter similar to the one seen loading troops in Kabul in 2004

The attack in Wardak Province killed seven Afghans.

KABUL, Afghanistan — In the deadliest day for American forces in the nearly decade-long war in Afghanistan, insurgents shot down a Chinook transport helicopter on Saturday, killing 30 Americans, including some Navy Seal commandos from the unit that killed Osama bin Laden, as well as 8 Afghans, American and Afghan officials said.

The helicopter, on a night-raid mission in the Tangi Valley of Wardak Province, to the west of Kabul, was most likely brought down by a rocket-propelled grenade, one coalition official said.

The Taliban claimed responsibility for the attack, and they could hardly have found a more valuable target: American officials said that 22 of the dead were Navy Seal commandos, including members of Seal Team 6. Other commandos from that team conducted the raid in Abbottabad, Pakistan, that killed Bin Laden in May. The officials said that those who were killed Saturday were not involved in the Pakistan mission.

Saturday’s attack came during a Read more…

Bodyguard Who Killed Karzai’s Brother Was Trusted CIA Asset

July 17, 2011 2 comments

infiniteunknown

The bodyguard who assassinated President Hamid Karzai’s brother had been working closely with US Special Forces and the CIA before he was recruited by the Taliban, raising fears over the Islamist movement’s increasingly sophisticated intelligence apparatus which has managed to threaten the inner circles of power in Afghanistan.

Sardar Mohammad, who shot Ahmed Wali Karzai at his home in Kandahar City on Tuesday, also held regular meetings with British officials, and had two brothers-in-law serving in a CIA-run paramilitary unit, the Kandahar Strike Force, the Washington Post reported yesterday.

Yet evidence is emerging that the Taliban recruited Mohammad – who was believed to be a friend, confidant and trusted lieutenant of Ahmed Wali Karzai – in an infiltration of the Read more…

Pakistan threatens to pull back troops after U.S. cuts aid

July 13, 2011 Comments off

rawstory

ISLAMABAD — Pakistan threatened Tuesday to pull back troops from the Afghan border in response to US aid cuts, defying American demands to open new fronts in the war on Al-Qaeda and escalating tensions with Washington.

“I think the next step is, the government or the armed forces will move the soldiers from the border areas,” Defence Minister Ahmed Mukhtar told the English-language Express 24/7 television.

“If at all things become difficult, we will just get our armed forces back.”

The United States confirmed Sunday that it had decided to withhold a third of its annual $2.7 billion security assistance to Islamabad, bringing relations to a new low after the covert American raid that killed Osama bin Laden.

Cuts of $800 million reportedly include about $300 million used to reimburse Pakistan for some costs of deploying more than 100,000 soldiers along the Afghan border, a hotbed of Taliban and Al-Qaeda-linked militants.

“We cannot afford to keep our military… it costs you extra amount of money when you are having soldiers in the mountains, so we will definitely use that tool,” Mukhtar said.

The military did not Read more…

N. Korea Purchased Pakistanis Nuclear Tech

July 8, 2011 Comments off

cbn

WASHINGTON — The founder of Pakistan’s nuclear weapons program claims that in the late 1990s North Korean officials paid kickbacks to senior Pakistani military figures in exchange for critical weapons technology.

Abdul Qadeer Khan has given a United States-based expert documents that appear to show North Korea’s government paid more than $3.5 million to two Pakistani military officials as part of the deal, the expert told The Associated Press Wednesday.

To back up his claim, Khan released what he said was a copy of a North Korean official’s 1998 letter to him, written in English, that purports to describe the secret deal.

Khan gave the documents to Simon Henderson of the Washington Institute for Near East Policy, an authority on Pakistan’s weapons program. He did so because he has been accused by his government of running a covert nuclear smuggling operation without official knowledge or consent.

“He gave it to me because he regarded it as showing that the story, the perception that he had Read more…