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Afghan President Ashraf Ghani

Afghan President Ghani rejects resignations of top security officials

KABUL: Afghanistan’s President Ashraf Ghani rejected on Sunday resignations tendered a day earlier by three senior security officials, the government said. The resignations from Defence Minister Tariq Shah Bahrami and Interior Minister Wais Barmak, as well as Masoom Stanekzai, the head of the National Directorate of Security, were submitted on Saturday hours after National Security Adviser Hanif Atmar quit. Government spokesman Haroon Chakansuri said in a statement Ghani had asked the three officials to continue with…

Pompeo, in surprise visit to Afghanistan, urges Taliban peace talks

KABUL: US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, on a surprise visit to Afghanistan on Monday, promised support for President Ashraf Ghani’s bid to start peace talks with the Taliban and repeated the United States would be willing to take part. The visit, at the end of a tour of Asian countries including North Korea and Vietnam, was Pompeo’s first to Afghanistan since he became Secretary of State in April. He said the strategy announced last year by President Donald Trump of sending more troops to increase pressure on the…

Gen Bajwa, Ghani discuss Afghan peace plan

RAWALPINDI: A delegation led by Chief of the Army Staff General Qamar Javid Bajwa met Afghan President Ashraf Ghani in Kabul on Tuesday afternoon. According to the Afghan president's spokesman Shahussain Murtazawi, the two sides discussed the implementation of the Afghanistan-Pakistan Action Plan for Peace, the fight against terrorism, reducing violence and Afghan peace process. In a tweet earlier, Director General of Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR) Major General Asif Ghafoor said: "Pakistan wishes to see…

Afghan president backs suicide bomb fatwa after 14 killed

KABUL: Afghan President Ashraf Ghani condemned Monday’s suicide bomb attack outside a peace tent gathering of Muslim clerics in Kabul and backed their fatwa against suicide attacks, saying they violated the tenets of Islam. The bomb killed 14 people, including seven clerics, and was the latest in a series of attacks that have underlined the deteriorating security ahead of parliamentary and district council elections set for Oct. 20. “The attack that targeted the large gathering of clerics and religious scholars from…

US defence chief reassures Afghans amid questions over Trump’s policies

KABUL: The United States will "remain committed" to Afghanistan, US Defence Secretary Ash Carter said on Friday, amid questions about what President-elect Donald Trump's foreign policy will mean for the country as it faces a renewed Taliban insurgency. Carter arrived in the Afghan capital earlier on an unannounced visit and met US troops and Afghan President Ashraf Ghani. "America is, and will remain, committed to a sovereign and secure Afghanistan," Carter told a news conference with Ghani. Trump has given few…