Daesh beheads 15 of its own fighters in Afghanistan

The Taliban and Daesh have frequently fought each other in Nangarhar and both have been targeted by sustained US air strikes. (Reuters)
Updated 23 November 2017
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Daesh beheads 15 of its own fighters in Afghanistan

JALALABAD, Afghanistan: Daesh on Thursday beheaded 15 of its own fighters due to infighting in Afghanistan’s eastern province of Nangarhar, the local government said.
Further details were not available and there was no confirmation from Daesh, whose local branch is known as Daesh in Khorasan, an old name for the area that includes modern Afghanistan.
Separately, a bomb exploded in Nangarhar’s capital, Jalalabad, the same day, killing at least eight people, although there was no indication of who may have been responsible.
Attaullah Khogyani, the provincial governor’s spokesman, said the 15 Daesh fighters were executed after a bout of infighting in the group, which has become notorious for its brutality. The killings occurred in the Surkh Ab bazaar of Achin district.
Nangarhar, where the movement first appeared around the beginning of 2015, is a volatile hub for Daesh and other militant groups on Afghanistan’s porous border with Pakistan.
The Taliban and Daesh have frequently fought each other in Nangarhar and both have been targeted by sustained US air strikes.
However the exact nature of the relationship between the two groups is little understood. There have been isolated incidents in Afghanistan in which the fighters from the two groups appear to have cooperated.
According to Afghan intelligence documents reviewed by Reuters earlier this year, security officials believe Daesh is present in nine provinces, from Nangarhar and Kunar in the east to Jawzjan, Faryab and Badakhshan in the north and Ghor in the central west.


Silent on Cohen, Trump says Manafort conviction ‘a disgrace’ but ‘does not involve me’

Updated 52 min 43 sec ago
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Silent on Cohen, Trump says Manafort conviction ‘a disgrace’ but ‘does not involve me’

WASHINGTON: President Donald Trump says the conviction of his former campaign chairman Paul Manafort on financial crimes is “a disgrace.”
But he hasn’t publicly reacted to former personal attorney Michael Cohen’s guilty pleas to felonies, including campaign finance violations he stated he carried out in coordination with Trump.
Manafort was convicted Tuesday in Virginia on charges brought by special counsel Robert Mueller, who is investigating Russian interference in the 2016 election and potential obstruction of justice. Cohen pleaded guilty in New York, saying he and Trump arranged the payment of hush money to porn star Stormy Daniels and a former Playboy model to influence the election.
Trump told reporters in West Virginia that Manafort’s conviction “has nothing to do with Russian collusion.” Of Manafort’s crimes, he says: “It doesn’t involve meRudy Giuliani  Trump’s personal lawyer says criminal charges against Michael Cohen don’t include the assertion he made in court that Trump directed him to make hush-money payments to influence the election.

Trump lawyer Rudy Giuliani said that there’s “no allegation of any wrongdoing against the President in the government’s charges.”
Giuliani’s comments came after Cohen pleaded guilty to charges including campaign finance fraud.
The charging documents say Cohen made the payments “at the request and suggestion of one or more members of the campaign.”
Cohen told a judge that he and Trump arranged to pay Daniels $130,000 and $150,000 to former Playboy model Karen McDougal as the 2016 election loomed.

Both women claimed they had affairs with Trump, which he denies.

Giuliani echoed Deputy US Attorney Robert Khuzami’s assessment that the charges against Cohen “reflect a pattern of lies and dishonesty over a significant period of time.”

Michael Cohen’s lawyer is suggesting President Donald Trump should face criminal charges for directing his longtime “fixer” to make hush-money payments to two women to influence the election.
Lawyer Lanny Davis tweeted on Tuesday: “If those payments were a crime for Michael Cohen, then why wouldn’t they be a crime for Donald Trump?“
Davis’ comments came after Cohen pleaded guilty to charges including campaign finance fraud.
Both women claimed they had affairs with Trump, which he denies.
Davis tweeted that by pleading guilty Cohen was “fulfilling his promise” to “put his family and country first and tell the truth about Donald Trump.”
Stormy Daniels’ lawyer says Michael Cohen’s guilty plea to charges involving hush-money payments should open the door to questioning President Donald Trump about “what he knew, when he knew it, and what he did about it.”
Cohen said in court on Tuesday that he coordinated with Trump to pay Daniels $130,000 and $150,000 to former Playboy model Karen McDougal to influence the election. Both women claimed they had affairs with Trump, which he denies.
Daniels said she and lawyer Michael Avenatti felt vindicated and look forward to apologies “from the people who claimed we were wrong.”
Avenatti is flirting with running for president in 2020 as a Democrat. He said the likelihood of that happening will dwindle if Trump resigns or decides not to run for re-election.
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