TODAY NEWS – Ashraf Ghani says ‘in talks to Return’ to Afghanistan After Fleeing (President of Afghanistan) , ENG vs IND

“I support the government initiative of ongoing negotiations with Abdullah Abdullah and former President Hamid Karzai,” former Afghan President Ashraf Ghani said

ASHRAF GHANI

Abu Dhabi : Former Afghan president Ashraf Ghani said on Wednesday he supports talks between the Taliban and top former government officials, and that he was “in talks to return” home after seeking refuge in the United Arab Emirates.

“I support the government initiative of ongoing negotiations with Abdullah Abdullah and former President Hamid Karzai. I want the success of this process,” he said in a video message – his first appearance since fleeing the country for the UAE on Sunday.

Ghani flew out as the terrorists closed in on the capital Kabul, sealing the Taliban’s rapid victory and a return to rule two decades after they were ousted by a US-led invasion. On Wednesday, the United Arab Emirates said it was hosting Ghani and his family “on humanitarian grounds”, in the first confirmation of his whereabouts.

The Taliban have offered a pledge of reconciliation, vowing no revenge against opponents and to respect women’s rights — but there are huge concerns globally about the Taliban’s brutal human rights record and tens of thousands of Afghans are still trying to flee.

“All those in the opposite side are pardoned from A to Z,” Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid told foreign and local reporters, in the movement’s first press conference. “We will not seek revenge.”

While the leadership tried to project a new image, video footage shot by Pajhwok Afghan News, a local news agency, showed protesters in the city who were carrying the Afghan flag fleeing with the sound of gunshots in the background.

READ ALSO : https://beyondnewsletters.com/fall-of-kabul/

NATO MINISTERS TO HOLD TALKS ON AFGHANISTAN

The session follows an extraordinary meeting of NATO envoys on Tuesday after which Stoltenberg admitted the alliance had been caught by surprise by the Taliban’s swift takeover of Afghanistan.

Brussels : NATO foreign ministers will hold an emergency videoconference on Friday to discuss the unfolding situation in Afghanistan and what steps they can take, the alliance’s chief Jens Stoltenberg said.

“I have convened an extraordinary virtual meeting of NATO Foreign Ministers this Friday 20 August to continue our close coordination & discuss our common approach on Afghanistan,” he tweeted on Wednesday.

The session follows an extraordinary meeting of NATO envoys on Tuesday after which Stoltenberg admitted the alliance had been caught by surprise by the Taliban’s swift takeover of Afghanistan.

He blamed Afghan leaders for the rout, saying they “failed to stand up” to the Taliban, and stressed his priority now was to evacuate NATO’s remaining 800 civilian personnel in Kabul and its Afghan employees.

Stoltenberg reiterated that all NATO countries had backed the US decision to withdraw its forces from Afghanistan, which meant all allied soldiers that had been deployed were leaving too.

The NATO ministers’ meeting on Friday comes after the White House said US President Joe Biden had not spoken to any of his fellow world leaders — including his NATO counterparts — in the immediate wake of the fall of Kabul to the Taliban last weekend. He has since spoken with British Prime Minister Boris Johnson.

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken has instead been the pointman in speaking with allies and would. participate in Friday’s talks.

FORMER ENGLAND CRICKETER HAMMERED ON TWITTER AFTER CALLING VIRAT KOHLI ” THE MOST FOUL MOUTHED INDIVIDUAL ”

England vs India: Former England cricketer Nick Compton was criticised on Twitter after he called Indian skipper Virat Kohli “the most foul mouthed individual”.

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Former England cricketer Nick Compton called India skipper Virat Kohli “the most foul mouthed individual” while praising England Test captain Joe Root, New Zealand skipper Kane Williamson and legendary cricketer Sachin Tendulkar as “level headed and grounded” men. “Isn’t Kohli the most foul mouthed individual. I’ll Never forget the barrage of abuse I received in 2012 when the swearing stunned me to the point that he did himself a serious disservice. It highlights what a level headed and grounded man Root, Tendulkar, Williamson et al are”, Compton tweeted.

However, Twitter users were quick to react to Compton’s tweet and pointed out instances when England players insulted the opposition on the field.

Compton’s remark came after the second Test between England and India at Lord’s that witnessed several heated exchanges between the players on the field, especially on Day 5.

Indian fast bowler Jasprit Bumrah received a barrage of verbal volleys from English players when he came out to bat on the final day of the Test.

England’s tactics of going after Bumrah with short-pitched bowling in addition to verbal altercations were criticised by several experts, including former Australian spinner Shane Warne.

The hosts’ tactics did them more harm than good as Bumrah and Mohammed Shami shared an unbeaten 89-run ninth-wicket partnership on Day 5 to help India set England a target of 272 runs.

The two fast bowlers then returned to pick up two wickets apiece as England were bowled out for 120 and lost the match by 151 runs.

Kohli, who was charged up and had been sending verbal volleys from the Lord’s balcony from the time Bumrah had been taking the heat in the middle, took an offensive form when India were on the field and was seen in animated discussions with several English players, most noticeably Jos Buttler.

The Indian captain passionately celebrated every wicket and broke into ecstatic celebrations when Mohammed Siraj bowled James Anderson to win India the contest.

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