KABUL (Reuters) – The Afghan government released 65 detainees on Thursday who the United States has warned pose a serious security threat, a move that further strains already tense U.S.-Afghan ties as the international mission in Afghanistan winds down.
Afghan Defense Ministry spokesman Zahir Azimi said the prisoners had been released from a detention facility near the Afghan capital, Kabul, and would be sent back to their respective home areas throughout Afghanistan.
KABUL (Reuters) – Afghan President Hamid Karzai stepped up criticism of Western institutions and military forces on Tuesday, accusing them of acting at crossed purposes and deepening rifts reopened by a spate of civilian casualties.
The criticism came on the second day of a visit by U.S. Defense Secretary Robert Gates intended to assess security progress but clouded by Afghan anger over the mistaken killing of nine boys in a NATO air strike last week.
Afghan presidential candidate Abdullah Abdullah quit an election run-off on Sunday (Nov 01) after accusing the government of not meeting his demands for a fair vote, leaving a cloud over the legitimacy of the next government.A weakened Afghan government under President Hamid Karzai would also be a blow for U.S. President Barack Obama as he decides whether to send up to 40,000 more U.S troops to fight a resurgent Taliban in Afghanistan.Election officials said hours later that the Nov. 7 vote would go ahead with both names on ballot papers but with Karzai as the only candidate.
KABUL OCT 24 – (REUTERS) Afghan election workers load ballot boxes onto a vehicle bound for provinces in northern and eastern Afghanistan on Saturday, ahead of the presidential run-off, scheduled for Nov. 7 when incumbent, President Hamid Karzai faces his rival, former foreign minister Abdullah Abdullah.