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U.S. Defense Secretary Rejects Proposal of Privatizing Afghanistan War

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(Last Updated On: October 24, 2022)

U.S. Defense Secretary James Mattis has rejected the idea of privatizing the war in Afghanistan .

When the Americans put their nation’s credibility on the line, privatizing it is probably not a wise idea,” Mattis said when asked Tuesday if there were any advantages to using a private army in Afghanistan.

“In South Asia, we continue to work by, with and through allies and partners in pursuit of peace, and two additional countries have now joined the NATO-led campaign in Afghanistan as partner nations. That’s United Arab Emirates and Qatar. And 32 of the 39 nations which have already committed forces to the mission agreed to either increase or sustain the current force levels through 2019,” he said.

Mattis said the US is fully supporting an Afghan-led and Afghan-owned peace efforts.

“We are fully supporting Afghan-led and Afghan-owned reconciliation efforts, and hard fighting is going on to convince the Taliban they must negotiate,” the US defense secretary said.

Prince, who now heads Hong Kong-based security firm Frontier Services Group founded the private security firm Blackwater, which became infamous in September 2007 when the company’s contractors killed 17 Iraqi civilians and wounded another 20 in Baghdad’s Nisour Square.

For more than a year, Prince has been trying to whisper into President Donald Trump’s ear that his legion of contractors could do a better job fighting the Taliban than American and coalition troops.

Prince is now making another push to privatize the war amid recent Taliban successes, hoping to find a more receptive audience in Trump.

Mattis argued valiantly on Tuesday that the U.S. military is successfully applying pressure on the Taliban to move toward peace negotiations with the Afghan government. He got into a heated exchange with one reporter, who asked why Afghan troops and police were unable to stop the Taliban from occupying the city of Ghazni.

There are more than 26,000 private contractors already serving in Afghanistan, according to the latest estimate from the offices of the inspector general at the Department of Defense, the State Department, and USAID.

In the meantime, US Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman General Joseph F. Dunford said on Tuesday that the United States has permanent interest in South Asia and will maintain its presence to have influence in that region.

“We have permanent interests in South Asia, diplomatic interests and security interests. And we’re going to maintain a presence to have influence in that region. The diplomatic presence, the security presence, and the form of that presence is going to change over time,” he said while speaking at a press briefing at the Pentagon with Secretary of Defense James N. Mattis.

Gen. Dunford said that at one point, the United States had over a hundred thousand U.S. forces in Afghanistan as compared to 14,000 at present, adding there would be a permanent diplomatic mission in Afghanistan.

“There ‘ll be permanent diplomatic presence across South Asia, but I certainly don’t expect that the current forces that we have in Afghanistan represents an enduring large military commitment,” he added.

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Nearly 900,000 children in Afghanistan suffer from excessive weight loss

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(Last Updated On: December 7, 2022)

The United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) has announced that it urgently needs help to treat children and deal with the humanitarian crisis in Afghanistan.

On Wednesday, UNICEF announced that about 875,000 children in Afghanistan suffer from excessive weight loss. The children’s charity says it needs help to treat children and prevent further malnutrition in 2023.

On the other hand, UNICEF announced on Tuesday through a humanitarian appeal that children are facing a historic confluence of crises around the world.

The agency has requested $10.3 billion for 2023 to address the plight of 110 million children worldwide.

Recently, the United Nations announced that 97 percent of the Afghan population lives below the poverty line.

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IEA defense minister meets Dubai ruler, US envoy

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(Last Updated On: December 7, 2022)

Acting Defense Minister of the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan, Mawlavi Mohammad Yaqoob Mujahid, met with Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Deputy Prime Minister of the UAE and ruler of Dubai on Tuesday.

Mujahid also met with Afghan businessmen based in the UAE, the ministry said in a statement.

In his meeting with the Dubai ruler, both sides discussed the strengthening of ties between Afghanistan and the UAE and the facilitation of business services for businessmen and other important issues, said the statement.

In addition, Mujahid met with US Special Representative for Afghanistan Tomas West in Abu Dhabi on Tuesday.

According to a statement, both sides discussed the current situation in Afghanistan.

Mujahid assured the US Special Representative that all the borders are secure in Afghanistan, saying that there is no threat from Afghan territory to the countries of the region and the world.

Afghan soil has never been used against any other country and never will be used, said Mujahid

He also told West that the world should respect the territorial integrity of Afghanistan.

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West, Abdullah discuss ‘urgent need’ for political dialogue among Afghans

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(Last Updated On: December 6, 2022)

US special envoy for Afghanistan, Thomas West, said on Tuesday he met with Abdullah Abdullah, the former head of Afghanistan’s reconciliation council, in India and discussed the “urgent need” for national political dialogue among Afghans.

West said on Twitter that there is consensus among the international community on the need for political dialogue among Afghans.

“There is consensus in int’l community on this imperative, which Afghans must lead and shape,” West said.

During his visit to India, West also met with Indian officials including Deputy National Security Adviser Vikram Misri and foreign ministry’s joint secretary JP Singh

“As fellow friend of Afghan people, US deeply appreciates India’s generous humanitarian support and commitment to Afghans’ fundamental rights,” West said.

This comes after the head of an IEA commission working for the return of former officials recently suggested that there is no need for a national political dialogue.

“We should join hands and build our country. Everything is fine. Every Afghan has got the right to serve in their country. There is no need to launch a new process and undermine security,” Shahabuddin Delawar said.

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