“I am sure this will be a full-stop to President Karzai’s calls for peace with the Taliban.”

Afghan chief negotiator assassinated

Mr Rabbani’s death may strengthen the hand of northern constituencies within the government who are opposed to Mr Karzai’s attempts to negotiate with the Taliban, which is drawn mainly from the Pashtun dominated south and east.

“I am sure this will be a full-stop to President Karzai’s calls for peace with the Taliban,” said Fahim Dashti, a political commentator. “Now is the time to call them criminals and call for a national war against them – wherever they are.” 

(read HERE)

Pakistan’s Shia Slaughter Continues–26 Shia pilgrims Murdered in Mastung

Quetta: 26 Shia pilgrims killed by gun men in Mastung

QUETTA: At least twenty-six Shia pilgrims were killed when unknown men opened indiscriminate fire on bus passengers in Mastung, our sources reported. It is feared that the death toll may rise because those injured are in critical condition.

Later, banned Lashkar-e-Jhangvi claimed responsibility for the attacks on Shia pilgrims.

According to sources the firing lasted between 5-10 minutes.

The bus was operated by a private company and several pilgrims were onboard. The bus was travelling from Quetta to Taftan.

According to the driver of the bus,50-60 people were travelling on the bus and there were only male passengers onboard.

The pilgrims were taken off the bus, lined up and then fired at.

Speaking to our sources the Deputy Commissioner Mastung said the injured were being shifted to nearby hospitals and ambulances had been called from Quetta.

Security forces have cordoned off the area.

The driver of the bus giving the eye witness account to our sources said 8 to 10 armed men riding two vehicles executed the heinous act and then headed back towards Quetta.

Khushhal Khan, driver of the bus, who was spared by the attackers said that first a pick up carrying the gun men intercepted the bus. They dismounted the pick up with Kalashnikovs and other heavy arms and ordered the passengers of the bus to come out, the driver added. He said, in the meantime, he got a chance and ran away from the scene to save himself.

“When I came back I found many passengers killed and others injured,” Khushhal Khan said, adding the security personnel reached the spot after a lapse of around 1 and a half hour time.

Emergency services also arrived at the site of the incident and shifted the dead and injured to hospital.

Chief of Afghan High Peace Council Assassinated In Own Home

[It is not likely that he was killed by a Taliban suicide-bomber, since they were apparently using his high office as a path to power.  It is more likely that he was killed by forces hostile to negotiations or reconciliation with the Taliban, such as the NDS, the Afghan secret service, or other anti-Pakistan entities (SEE:  Taliban’s war machine must be destroyed: Noor).]

Former Afghan President and chief of a new peace council Burhanuddin Rabbani holds a press conference, Thursday, Oct. 14, 2010 in Kabul, Afghanistan. Rabbani says he’s convinced the Taliban are ready to negotiate peace. (AP Photo/Dusan Vranic)
afghanprez.jpg

Ex-Afghan president killed in blast

Leader killed by bomber with explosives in turban

  • AMIR SHAH,Associated Press

KABUL, Afghanistan (AP) — A Kabul police official says former Afghan President Burhanuddin Rabbani was killed by a suicide bomber concealing explosives in his turban.

A presidential spokesman says Afghan President Hamid Karzai is cutting short his trip to the United Nations in New York to return to Kabul.

Mohammad Zahir, the chief of criminal investigation for the Kabul police, said the turban bomber entered Rabbani’s house Tuesday evening.

The Associated Press

Date: Tuesday Sep. 20, 2011 11:03 AM ET

KABUL, Afghanistan — Two Afghan government sources say former Afghan President Burhanuddin Rabbani has been killed in the capital Kabul.

The sources, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said Rabbani was killed Tuesday evening at his home in Kabul.

Rabbani was head of the country’s high peace council, which was set up by the Afghan government to work toward a political solution. However, it had made little headway since it was formed a year ago.

Rabbani was president of the Afghan government that preceded the Taliban. After he was driven from Kabul in 1996, he became the nominal head of the Northern Alliance, mostly minority Tajiks and Uzbeks, who swept to power in Kabul after the Taliban’s fall. Rabbani is an ethnic Tajik.

Turkmenistan Calls All 18 yr. Old Males To Active Duty

Autumn military call-up announced in Turkmenistan

The President of Turkmenistan signed the decree “On discharge to the reserve from the Armed Forces and other troops of Turkmenistan of soldiers doing compulsory military service, and on the call up of Turkmen citizens for military service.”

In accordance with the decree, soldiers, who have done their statutory period of service, will be discharged to the reserve from the Armed Forces and other troops of Turkmenistan in October – December 2011.

As the Turkmenistan.ru correspondent reports from Ashgabat, male citizens of Turkmenistan, who on the day of recruitment turned 18 years, who do not qualify for deferment of conscription as senior citizens, will be called for military service in October – December 2011.

The document says that the discharge of soldiers who have done their statutory period of service should be held in a festive atmosphere, and those soldiers who excelled in military and socio-humanitarian training should be awarded.

© TURKMENISTAN.RU, 2011

Saudis give PNA $200 million aid prior to the Palestine UN bid

Saudis give PNA $200 million aid prior to the Palestine UN bid

The Palestinian National Authority (PNA) announced late Monday that Saudi Arabia will transfer $200 million to support its treasury to overcome the current financial crisis

  • By Nasouh Nazzal, Correspondent
  • Gulf News

Ramallah: The Palestinian National Authority (PNA) announced late Monday that Saudi Arabia will transfer $200 million to support its treasury to overcome the current financial crisis.

Dr. Salam Fayyad, Palestinian Prime Minister, said that King Abdullah Bin Abdul Aziz has issued instructions to fund the Palestinian budget.

The money transfer was announced ahead of Palestinian UN bid to win statehood recognition.

Sameer Al Hourani, a public sector employee, told Gulf News that the last thing almost 160,000 Palestinian employees thought of was receiving this month’s salaries, taking the Palestinian UN bid into consideration.

Threats

He stressed that the Palestinian employees have been considering the threats coming from various sources of suspending the tax revenues and cutting of foreign aid to the PNA. “We are happy with the Saudi announcement of the money transfer,” he said.

“The Palestinians were just right to depend on their Arab brothers,” he stressed.

Israel has threatened to suspend the transfer of tax revenues which they collect on behalf of the Palestinians and the US Administration also considering cutting its financial aid to the PNA should the Palestinian leadership go ahead with their UN initiative to win statehood recognition.

Russian Press Breaks Story of 17 Captured Brit and French Commandos On Aug. 23

[Reuters pretends that they “broke this story” today, but a Russian friend from Oriental Review put me on to this story (which I discounted at the time...sorry, Andre) on Aug. 23.   He found the original report (included below Reuters article) in the Russian press at http://news.argumenti.ru.]

Libya “mercenary” claim turns spotlight on special ops

Tue Sep 20, 2011
By David Brunnstrom and Giles Elgood

BRUSELS/LONDON (Reuters) – A boast by Gaddafi loyalists that they had captured 17 foreign mercenaries this week has been greeted with skepticism, but the claim has highlighted the importance of covert military operations in the overthrow of the Libyan leader.

Gaddafi’s spokesman Moussa Ibrahim has so far not made good on his promise to put the group on television and he has produced no other evidence to back his story, which was quickly denied in Western capitals.

“The lack of evidence is for the moment what I find most remarkable about the whole story. Where are the boots, where are the watches, not to mention the faces?” said Francis Heisbourg, chairman of the International Institute of Strategic Studies.

The whole thing may turn out to be no more than a bold piece of disinformation by a spin doctor with nothing to lose. But it still fits in with a compelling narrative surrounding the secret side of Libya’s war.

“This claim is coming from Moussa Ibrahim and a good proportion of what he has been saying is flat-out wrong,” said Shashank Joshi, an associate fellow at the Royal United Services Institute in London.

“Moussa Ibrahim has no credibility to protect, so if it turns out to be completely wrong there are no repercussions for him — it’s just a good piece of psychological warfare.”

In focusing on “mercenaries”, Ibrahim has chosen an issue that, in its broadest terms, has been seen as crucial in the tortuous struggle to topple Gaddafi.

Ibrahim’s use of the word may have been intended as a reference to special forces employed as private military contractors to provide “a degree of deniability”, Joshi said.

“The more distant they are from western governments, it’s much less of a politically sensitive issue,” he said.

While they received a boost from NATO-led air strikes against Gaddafi’s army, rebel forces were for months unable to make much progress on the ground. This is where Western special forces provided vital assistance to the often disorganised revolutionaries.

“Western special forces were less involved with combat on the ground, and more focused on supplying NATO forces with intelligence on targets, supplying arms and training the rebels,” said Barak Seener, a research fellow at RUSI.

“Their role has been successful and has led to an increased rate of defections, the erosion of support for Gaddafi and the rapid crumbling of his regime along with the fall of Tripoli.”

In World War Two, Libya was the birthplace of Britain’s Special Air Service, or SAS, which ranged over the desert to destroy German aircraft, supply dumps and railway links.

Early special forces experience in today’s Libya was less successful. A group of British diplomats, reported to have included special forces soldiers, was humiliatingly captured near Benghazi during an attempt to make contact with rebel forces.

Since then, special forces operations appear to have been more productive, involving personnel from Britain, France, Jordan, Qatar, Turkey, Egypt and the United Arab Emirates, according to media reports.

Rebel units in Tripoli were secretly armed so they could rise up and help take the capital, while British agents infiltrated the city to deploy radio equipment to help target NATO air strikes in a way that would avoid civilian casualties.

France sent dozens of military advisers to organise and train the rebels. France also delivered arms to the rebels that had been supplied by Qatar.

Reuters correspondents in the field report having seen apparent evidence of foreign special forces on the ground, although their activities were never made clear. Rebels, whose accounts could not be confirmed, also spoke of assistance from CIA agents.

Heisbourg said that with Gaddafi on the run, it was now time for foreign special forces to start leaving Libya as quickly as possible as they risked getting caught up in internecine quarrels within the forces loyal to Libya’s new transitional government.

While details have emerged of what special forces had done earlier in the conflict — assistance with weapons and tactics, acting as forward air controllers for NATO bombers and providing weapons to rebel forces in the Western Mountains — it was not clear what they might be doing now.

“People who know are not going to say and people who say obviously don’t know,” Heisbourg said.

According to data from Tripoli, the serious losses suffered here a group of British special forces

August 23, 2011, 11:50 [“Argumenty.ru,” Alexander Grigoriev  ]

According to data from Tripoli, the serious losses suffered here a group of British special forces

According to a source close to the government, last night in Tripoli, killing several people from the British Special superelitnogo Special Air Service (SAS). Explorer group of local residents taken prisoner and will be prosecuted.

“Special anti-sabotage team, which is part of the 32nd brigade of special purpose forces and engaged in mopping up Libya’s Tripoli from the rebels after the battle he managed to keep alive a native of the capital. According to the testimony of the detainee, he was conductor of the commando Special Air Service (SAS) of 17 persons. According to his testimony, only the team leader was fundamentally Anglo-Saxons, while the other fighters – Arabs. He had a task to a group, avoiding ambushes and roadblocks government forces and the police, the center of Tripoli. For this he promised to pay about three hundred dollars, “- said” Argumentam.ru “on Skype from Tripoli source in government circles Libya.

He also said that the commandos were ambushed by special units of Libyan troops. “Several people were killed, many injured. Pick up dead, the British retreated. The persecution was carried out. At this point, the conductor and was captured, “- he stressed.

Answering the question “Argumentov.ru” about the fate of the conductor, the source said that “as soon as conditions permit in the city, the detainee will be given by the court.”

“This will be an open trial, it will be able to attend the foreign media to secure his testimony” – assured the government source.

Confirm or deny this information officially or from independent sources, we can not. However, “Argumentam.ru” it became known that this morning with a military base in Italy, on which the NATO planes, flew to an unknown military transport aircraft. For his service and were not allowed to download the Italian military. And cordon operation conducted by the military and the U.S. Air Force of Great Britain.

British military expert Peter Beynchli believes that the evacuation is carried out so dead soldiers special forces of the two countries. In a conversation with “Argumentami.ru” he suggested that “it is likely that soon in Afghanistan or Pakistan would be a” Taliban attack, “during which” die “several tens of NATO troops. Their bodies will be evacuated back home and solemnly buried in military cemeteries. Place of death would mean Afghanistan. ”

 

Another Lashkar Leader Murdered In Mamound

[If the Pak Army had an ounce of human decency to split among themselves, then they would move to protect all of these Lashkar leaders from further Taliban retribution attacks.  I have not yet attempted to piece together a grand total of Khans and associates murdered in Mamound, but, judging by the stories included on this website, there must be nearly ten or twelve of them by now.  They took-up arms at the Army’s insistence.  Why would they be abandoned now, when they have clearly served as an irritant to the TTP Taliban of Faqir Mohammed.  If they can’t capture or kill Faqir, they could at least put “fool-proof security” around the Tehsil.]

Gunmen kill tribal elder in Mamound

BAJAUR AGENCY: Unidentified gunmen shot dead a tribal elder at Tehsil Mamound, officials said on Monday. Malik Aziz Khan was on his way to mosque for prayer when unidentified gunmen ambushed him by starting indiscriminate firing at him that caused his death on the spot. Political authorities have started investigations and search operation for the arrest of the culprits. A Tribal elder and peace committee member, Malik Noor Gul, was also killed by assailants at Dama Dola of Mamound tehsil a few days ago. The tribesmen of Mamound have expressed deep concerns over the killing of noted tribal elders and demanded the government to arrest killers besides improving law and order situation in Bajaur Agency.