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News About Central Asia
April 29, 2016
Pentagon to release report into Afghan hospital attack
Washington (AFP) April 28, 2016
The Pentagon is poised to release the final report on its investigation into a deadly air strike on a Doctors Without Borders (MSF) hospital in Afghanistan, a defense official said Thursday. Last October's bombing of the facility in Kunduz - which came as NATO-backed Afghan forces clashed with insurgents for control of the northern provincial capital - left 42 people dead. Speaking on condition of anonymity, the official told AFP the approximately 3,000-page report could be made public as soo ... read more

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Pakistan's largest bank opens branch in China
Pakistan's Habib Bank Limited on Monday announced it had received a licence to open a branch in China, a move that would make it the first South Asian lender to operate in the world's number two economy. ... more
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No kidding: Pentagon ran 'fancy Italian goat' project
US lawmakers keen to shear costs from expensive reconstruction efforts in Afghanistan are locking horns with the Pentagon over a failed multi-million-dollar project to mate cashmere goats in the war-torn country. ... more
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Air strikes hurting IS group in Afghanistan: US
The Islamic State's nascent presence in Afghanistan has dwindled after the US military stepped up strikes on the jihadists, a US general said Thursday, but warned they possess the ability to "catch fire" again. ... more
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US probes Afghan air strikes that killed 17 'civilians'
The US military is investigating air strikes it carried out this month in Afghanistan which Kabul said killed 17 "insurgents" but local officials and witnesses insisted Thursday were civilians. ... more
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India trying to destabilise Pakistan, says army chief
Pakistan's powerful military chief accused India Tuesday of being "blatantly" involved in attempts to destabilise the country, saying Delhi was hostile to an ambitious economic plan by Beijing and Islamabad for the region. ... more
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Kyrgyz prime minister resigns but denies corruption allegations
Kyrgyzstan's Prime Minister Temir Sariyev quit on on Monday over corruption allegations involving a road-building contract won by a Chinese company. ... more
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Nagorny Karabakh fighting threatens to pit Russia against Turkey
With bad blood flowing between Turkey and Russia since Ankara shot down a Russian warplane in Syria in November, the latest wave of violence in Nagorny-Karabakh could have wider implications. ... more
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China slams US NGO award for Uighur dissident
China on Friday blasted an award given in the US to an exiled Uighur dissident as a "blasphemy against and a stain upon human rights", as President Xi Jinping visited Washington. ... more
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Azerbaijan announces Nagorny Karabakh 'ceasefire' but clashes reported
Azerbaijan on Sunday announced a unilateral ceasefire after the worst outbreak of violence in decades over the disputed Nagorny Karabakh region, but Armenian forces insisted clashes were continuing despite international pressure to stop the fighting. ... more
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Pakistan protests to India after 'spy' arrest
Pakistan on Friday protested to India after arresting a man suspected of being an Indian spy, sparking a new diplomatic tiff between the nuclear-armed neighbours. ... more
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Struggle in the city for Tibetan nomads
By mid-morning, Lobsang's leather cowboy hat is askew, his black robes dishevelled, and his breath stinks of booze. Once a nomad herder roaming the high Tibetan plateau, instead he stumbles around his sparse new concrete house. ... more
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Pentagon chief praises Kurdish fighters in Syria
US Defense Secretary Ashton Carter on Thursday praised the fighting of Kurdish groups in Syria that have declared a federal region in areas of the country under their control. ... more
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NATO chief vows to ramp up support as Afghan forces struggle
NATO chief Jens Stoltenberg Wednesday vowed a more "flexible" approach in aiding struggling Afghan forces, after a report said a US general recommended ramping up military engagement despite the end of the coalition's combat mission. ... more
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Climber killer among 13 sentenced to death by Pakistan military
Military courts in Pakistan have sentenced 13 militants to death for terrorism-related offences including the 2013 massacre of 10 foreign mountaineers, the army said Tuesday. ... more
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China terror convictions nearly doubled in 2015
Convictions for state security crimes including "violent terrorism" nearly doubled in 2015, figures from China's top court showed Sunday, following a "strike hard" campaign to quell unrest in the largely Muslim region of Xinjiang and crackdowns on civil society. ... more
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Turkey hits PKK targets in Iraq with air strikes
Turkey's air force bombarded Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) targets in northern Iraq this week, killing 67 rebel fighters, the military said Saturday, the first such strikes in nearly a month. ... more
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Turkey pounds Kurdish bases after Ankara bombing
Turkey on Monday held four suspects over a suicide car bombing that killed at least 36 people in Ankara, as warplanes pounded Kurdish rebel bases in northern Iraq over the attack, the capital's third in five months. ... more
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IS jihadists contained in small part of Afghanistan: US general
The Islamic State jihadist group is unable to make significant inroads in Afghanistan and its fighters are contained in a small part of the country, a US general said Thursday. ... more
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21 militants killed in NW Pakistan offensive: military
Pakistan said Tuesday it has killed 21 militants in air strikes and ground operations that began overnight in a northwest border region where it is carrying out an offensive to clear Taliban strongholds. ... more
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Afghan retreat from key districts stokes instability fears
Overstretched Afghan forces are pulling back from violent southern districts without a fight, ceding key territory to the resurgent Taliban as part of an unprecedented "strategic retreat" that has stoked fears government control is slipping. ... more
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Afghan Taliban leadership is in Pakistan, Islamabad says
A top Pakistani official has said for the first time publicly that the Afghan Taliban's leadership enjoys a safe haven inside his country, which Islamabad uses as a "lever" to pressure the group into talks with Kabul. ... more
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Turkey warns of 'further measures' against Kurdish fighters in Syria
Turkey is prepared to take further measures against Kurdish fighters in Syria beyond its current artillery bombardment and does not rule out air strikes on their positions, a senior official said on Friday. ... more
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Afghan blasts kill 25, jeopardising peace talks
Twenty-five people were killed in two attacks in Afghanistan Saturday, including one in the capital, with the blasts potentially jeopardising attempts by Kabul to persuade the Taliban to join peace talks set for next month. ... more
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Pakistan begins 'last phase' of militant offensive
Pakistan has begun the "last phase" of a bloody operation targeting militants in the restive northwest region along the Afghan border, a senior security official confirmed to AFP Thursday. ... more
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