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World China holds high-level talks with the Taliban

07:10  22 november  2021
07:10  22 november  2021 Source:   pri.org

US airlifts out 160 Afghan Air Force pilots, trapped for months in Tajikistan

  US airlifts out 160 Afghan Air Force pilots, trapped for months in Tajikistan U.S. airlifts out 160 Afghan Air Force pilots, trapped for months in Tajikistan The pilots had spent nearly three months in detention in Tajikistan after they used their military aircraft to fly to Afghanistan’s northern neighbor as the Taliban seized Kabul in August. But some of the pilots found themselves in a frightening limbo, detained in a hotel complex by Tajikistan's authorities, where they said they spent weeks held largely incommunicado and unsure if they might be sent back to the Taliban.

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a person wearing a suit and tie: In this photo released by China's Xinhua News Agency, Taliban co-founder Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar (L) and Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi pose for a photo during their meeting in Tianjin, China, July 28, 2021. © Li Ran/Xinhua via AP

In this photo released by China's Xinhua News Agency, Taliban co-founder Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar (L) and Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi pose for a photo during their meeting in Tianjin, China, July 28, 2021.

China-Afghanistan

China Foreign Minister Wang Yi held talks on Wednesday with high-level Taliban officials as the US and NATO withdrawal from Afghanistan raises questions about security in the region. China, who has a narrow border with Afghanistan in the remote Wakhan Valley, has interests in maintaining peace in Afghanistan. Beijing, with deals for oil and mining in the country, has long tried to prevent Islamist radicals from taking hold in its western Xinjiang region. US Secretary of State Antony Blinken called China's involvement in Afghanistan a potentially "positive thing.”

Afghanistan: Taliban take over TV station in strategic city

  Afghanistan: Taliban take over TV station in strategic city The Taliban have taken over a TV station in Afghanistan's strategic Helmand province, a source at the TV and radio station told CNN Monday, marking the latest of a series of advances by the militant group in the country. © Hoshang Hashimi/AFP/Getty Images An Afghan National Army commando stands guard on top of a vehicle along the road in Enjil district of Herat province on August 1, 2021, as skirmishes between Afghan National Army and Taliban continues. The Helmand TV station, located in the city of Lashkar Gah, the capital of Helmand province, is operated by state-run Radio and Television Afghanistan.

Ethiopia

A vital roadway and lifeline that supplies humanitarian aid to the war-torn Tigray region in northern Ethiopia is blocked. David Beasley, head of the United Nations World Food Program, says the agency will run out of food by Friday. More than 150 trucks with food and other aid are stuck in the neighboring Afar region, prevented from accessing Tigray by what aid workers describe as an unofficial Ethiopian government blockade. As many as 400,000 people are now facing famine.

Ever Given

One of the world’s largest container ships that blocked the Suez Canal for six days in March — causing global supply chain havoc — has reached the port of Rotterdam in the Netherlands on Thursday. It will finally begin unloading its cargo before heading to Felixstowe, England. After getting dislodged from the sandy Suez Canal banks, the massive skyscraper-sized vessel was detained in Great Bitter Lake until a financial dispute was resolved.

Exclusive: Russia Lays Out Path to Stabilize Afghanistan, Avoid Another 9/11

  Exclusive: Russia Lays Out Path to Stabilize Afghanistan, Avoid Another 9/11 Senior Foreign Policy Writer Tom O'Connor conducted an exclusive interview in Moscow on Tuesday with Russian special representative for Afghanistan Zamir Kabulov.Q: In the broader terms of Russia's approach to Afghanistan, what are its best hopes for the country right now and its greatest concerns as it relates to the current situation?

From The World

A new law in Maine requires large companies to pay for recycling packaging waste

a stack of flyers on a sidewalk: An empty Amazon box sits outside a north Jackson, Mississippi, residence, awaiting pickup for recycling, July 29, 2019. Rogelio V. Solis/AP © Rogelio V. Solis/AP An empty Amazon box sits outside a north Jackson, Mississippi, residence, awaiting pickup for recycling, July 29, 2019. Rogelio V. Solis/AP

The US state of Maine has passed a law that makes companies pay for the packaging waste they create, and nearly a dozen states are now on track to follow suit.

"From a very basic level, there is a shift in cost from the municipalities and the taxpayers to the producers who put these products onto the marketplace," said Scott Cassel, CEO and founder of the Product Stewardship Institute in Boston.

Russia tests vaccine science by combining Sputnik and AstraZeneca in new trial

a man holding a sign: A medical worker administers a shot of Russia's Sputnik V coronavirus vaccine at a vaccination center in Gostinny Dvor, a huge exhibition place in Moscow, July 12, 2021. Russia’s health officials have given a go-ahead to testing a combination of the AstraZeneca coronavirus shot and the single-dose version of the domestically developed Sputnik V vaccine. Pavel Golovkin/AP © Pavel Golovkin/AP A medical worker administers a shot of Russia's Sputnik V coronavirus vaccine at a vaccination center in Gostinny Dvor, a huge exhibition place in Moscow, July 12, 2021. Russia’s health officials have given a go-ahead to testing a combination of the AstraZeneca coronavirus shot and the single-dose version of the domestically developed Sputnik V vaccine. Pavel Golovkin/AP

Don’t whitewash details of photojournalist Danish Siddiqui’s murder

  Don’t whitewash details of photojournalist Danish Siddiqui’s murder On July 16, Pulitzer Prize-winning photojournalist Danish Siddiqui, the chief photographer for Reuters in India, was killed in Afghanistan. © Provided by Washington Examiner His death made headline news around the world. "He was embedded with a convoy of Afghan forces that was ambushed by Taliban militants near a key border post with Pakistan," the BBC reported. He "was killed while covering a clash between Afghan security forces and the Taliban," the New York Times wrote. He "was killed in what was described as Taliban crossfire," the Washington Post explained.

Russia has started a new COVID-19 vaccine trial that combines a first dose of the Russian vaccine, Sputnik V, with a second dose of the AstraZeneca shot developed in Britain. The country’s registry of approved clinical trials shows the small study was scheduled to start July 26 and plans to enroll 150 volunteers.

"Even though they're both based on an adenoviral platform ... they're using slightly different techniques to teach the immune system how to fight off the virus," said Judy Twigg, a global public health expert at Virginia Commonwealth University.

Bright spot

Two nations at odds with each other in the world of geopolitics were able to brush the tensions aside on the court. Athletes from the US and Iranian basketball teams at the Summer Olympics in Tokyo came together — following a 120-66 win for the US on Wednesday — in a show of camaraderie, for smiles and photos.

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Firefighters work at the scene of a forest fire near Andreyevsky village outside Tyumen, western Siberia, Russia, June 16, 2021. Wildfires in Siberia are releasing record amounts of greenhouse gases, scientists say, contributing to global warming. Each year, thousands of wildfires engulf wide swathes of Russia, destroying forests and shrouding broad territories in acrid smoke. This summer has seen particularly massive fires in Yakutia in northeastern Siberia following unprecedented heat. Maksim Slutsky/AP/File photo © Maksim Slutsky/AP/File photo Firefighters work at the scene of a forest fire near Andreyevsky village outside Tyumen, western Siberia, Russia, June 16, 2021. Wildfires in Siberia are releasing record amounts of greenhouse gases, scientists say, contributing to global warming. Each year, thousands of wildfires engulf wide swathes of Russia, destroying forests and shrouding broad territories in acrid smoke. This summer has seen particularly massive fires in Yakutia in northeastern Siberia following unprecedented heat. Maksim Slutsky/AP/File photo

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Taliban Wants Afghan President Removed, New Government Where Women Have More Rights .
Although the Taliban said they would not monopolize power in the region, they insist that a peace deal will not be reached until a new government is negotiated. Taliban spokesman Suhail Shaheen, who is also a member of the group's negotiating team, is promising that under the new government, women will be allowed to work, go to school and participate in politics—rights that were denied when the Taliban enforced a harsh version of Islam last time the group ruled the country.

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