KABUL (Reuters) – The Afghan president’s older brother, Qayum Karzai, announced on Wednesday he was withdrawing from next month’s presidential election and would back former foreign minister Zalmai Rassoul.
The alliance is the first public acknowledgement of weeks of negotiations aimed at consolidating the voting bloc of Pashtuns, the country’s largest ethnic group, and brings together two candidates considered close to the current president.
KABUL (Reuters) – India’s most important message for Afghanistan is that it is not leaving, and it is backing that message with the biggest aid package it has ever given another country.
Indian diplomats insist the message is meant as reassurance for allies in Afghanistan nervous about waning international support as NATO withdraws its troops. Yet it could equally have been chosen to send a warning to India’s arch-rival, Pakistan.
PESHAWAR, Pakistan (Reuters) – The Pakistani military said it had bombed the hideout of a militant leader on Sunday, killing five insurgents, only a day after the Taliban declared a one-month ceasefire to pursue stalled peace talks with the government.
The target of the attack, Mullah Tamanchey, directed a deadly assault against a convoy carrying a polio vaccination team and security forces on Saturday in which 12 people were killed, the military said.
ISLAMABAD (Reuters) – A Pakistani court convicted five men on Saturday of murdering a young television reporter, his brother said, marking the first time anyone has been convicted for killing a Pakistani journalist.
Wail Babar, a 28-year-old journalist for Geo news, covered the seamy side of Karachi, a sweltering port megacity of 18 million people. He reported on drugs, crime, militancy and deadly turf struggles between the city’s main political parties.
ISLAMABAD (Reuters) – The Pakistani Taliban on Saturday announced a one-month ceasefire aimed at reviving peace talks after receiving what it said were government assurances it would not be attacked.
Speculation has mounted that the Pakistani military is planning an offensive against the insurgents after talks between the militants and government broke down.
ISLAMABAD (Reuters) – Pakistan warned Iran on Tuesday not to send troops across the two countries’ shared border to retrieve five kidnapped Iranian border guards, an incident that threatens to exacerbate regional and sectarian tensions.
On Monday, Iranian Interior Minister Abdolreza Rahmani-Fazli was quoted as saying Iran might consider sending its forces onto Pakistani soil if Pakistan did not take the steps necessary to fight against militants.
NEW DELHI/ISLAMABAD (Reuters) – The Pakistani Islamic hardliner blamed for an attack on India’s parliament that brought the nuclear rivals to the brink of war has resurfaced after years in seclusion, setting off alarm bells in New Delhi.
Twice since the end of December, Indian authorities have issued an airport security alert, warning of an attempt by members of a Pakistan-based militant group called Jaish-e-Mohammad, or Army of Muhammad, to hijack a plane, with smaller airfields most at risk.
NEW DELHI/ISLAMABAD (Reuters) – The Pakistani Islamic hardliner blamed for an attack on parliament that brought the nuclear rivals to the brink of war has resurfaced after years in seclusion, setting off alarm bells in New Delhi.
Twice since the end of December, authorities have issued an airport security alert, warning of an attempt by members of a Pakistan-based militant group called Jaish-e-Mohammad, or Army of Muhammad, to hijack a plane, with smaller airfields most at risk.
ISLAMABAD (Reuters) – A Pakistani anti-drone activist kidnapped from his home last week was tortured and interrogated before being dumped blindfolded on the outskirts of the capital early on Friday morning, his lawyer said.
Activist Kareem Khan was blindfolded and interrogated in two different locations, his lawyer Shahzad Akbar said, and tied up and beaten on the soles of his feet. At first his interrogators wore police uniforms and later civilian clothes, he said.
ISLAMABAD (Reuters) – A court in Pakistan on Wednesday ordered authorities to produce an anti-drone activist abducted just days before he was due to travel to Europe to meet lawmakers, in a case that spotlights citizens’ distrust of the unmanned aircraft and government security forces.
Drones have long been an irritant in relations between Pakistan and the United States, which prizes them for their accuracy in killing al-Qaida and Taliban militants. But Pakistan says they kill civilians and infringe its sovereignty.