Taleban bomb kills Afghan top cop

Updated 11 December 2012
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Taleban bomb kills Afghan top cop

KANDAHAR: A Taleban bombing killed an Afghan provincial police chief and gunmen fatally shot an official in charge of women’s affairs yesterday — the latest victims of a campaign targeting government officials across Afghanistan.
The police chief for Nimroz province was traveling home from neighboring Herat province when his vehicle struck a roadside bomb in the morning hours, said the chief’s secretary Obaidullah, who only goes by one name.
The police chief, Gen. Mohammad Musa Rasouli, was seriously wounded and was rushed to the hospital, where he died of his wounds, said the secretary. Rasouli was returning to his job in Nimroz after a short break in Herat province, Obaidullah said.
Taleban spokesman Qari Yousef Ahmadi said the insurgency had been tracking Rasouli and had specifically targeted him.
“We are continuing to target government officials,” Ahmadi said.
Also Monday morning, gunmen shot and killed the head of the women’s affairs department for the eastern Laghman province, said Sarhadi Zewak, a spokesman for the provincial government.
Najia Sediqi was on her way to the office from her home on the outskirts of the provincial capital when she was attacked, Zewak said. She had taken the job after her predecessor, Anifa Safi, died in a bomb attack in July.
No one immediately claimed responsibility for Sediqi’s killing. Police are investigating the incident, Zewak said. A statement from Afghan President Hamid Karzai condemned the killing of Sediqi as a “terrorist attack.” The latest attacks come after the attempted assassination of the country’s spy chief, Asadullah Khalid, on Thursday. He was seriously injured when a suicide bomber posing as a Taleban peace envoy detonated a hidden bomb.
In the Afghan capital, Kabul, about 200 women marched yesterday, carrying pictures of victims of war crimes for which they said the perpetrators have never been brought to justice. They called on the Afghan government to prosecute those accused of war crimes during more than 30 years of conflict in the country.



In the south, meanwhile, a NATO service member was killed in a bomb attack, the international military alliance said. The death brings to five the number of international service members killed so far this month.
Meanwhile, the Taleban say they will attend a meeting in France to discuss Afghanistan’s future but will not talk about peace and reconciliation.
Spokesman Zabiullah Mujahid said by telephone yesterday that two of the group’s representatives will attend next week’s meeting, which is being organized by a French think tank on the outskirts of Paris.
Representatives from the Afghan government’s peace council, political parties and the Hezb-e-Islami will also attend.
The meeting is not expected to produce results, but it will represent a rare-face-to-face gathering of Afghanistan’s major players.
French Foreign Ministry deputy spokesman Vincent Floreani says an intra-Afghan conference will be held this month and organized by the Foundation for Strategic Research.


Germany’s Merkel calls for solutions to Iran’s “aggressive tendencies”

Updated 39 min 54 sec ago
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Germany’s Merkel calls for solutions to Iran’s “aggressive tendencies”

  • German Chancellor Angela Merkel: Iran’s aggressive tendencies must not only be discussed, but rather we need solutions urgently.
  • Germany remained party to the Iran nuclear deal, which lifted sanctions on Tehran in exchange for curbing its atomic program, after US President Donald Trump withdrew from it in May.

AMMAN: German Chancellor Angela Merkel on Thursday said European countries shared concerns over Iran’s ballistic missile program and called for solutions to its “aggressive tendencies” in the Middle East.
“Iran’s aggressive tendencies must not only be discussed, but rather we need solutions urgently,” she said after meeting Jordan’s King Abdullah in Amman.
Germany remained party to the Iran nuclear deal, which lifted sanctions on Tehran in exchange for curbing its atomic program, after US President Donald Trump withdrew from it in May.
Merkel said on Thursday that while European countries wanted to maintain the 2015 accord, they shared concerns over Iran’s ballistic missile program, its presence in Syria and its role in the war in Yemen.
In Syria, Iran is a big military supporter of President Bashar Assad, sending some of its own forces there and backing Shiite militias from Lebanon and Iraq who are fighting on the ground. Gulf and Western countries accuse Tehran of arming the Houthi group in Yemen, which it denies.
Merkel said earlier this month after meeting Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu that the question of Iran’s regional influence was “worrying, especially for Israel’s security.”
Abdullah, who met Netanyahu on Monday and spoke by phone with Trump’s son-in-law and regional envoy Jared Kushner on Tuesday, said there could be no peace in the Middle East without a Palestinian state with Jerusalem as its capital.
The United States is preparing a new peace plan, which has not yet been made public, but has already angered Palestinians by recognizing Jerusalem as the capital of Israel.
Abdullah this month appointed a new prime minister after the country’s biggest protests in years over taxes and price increases pushed by the International Monetary Fund.
Merkel said reforms should be balanced and “not hit the wrong people.”