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Taliban rejects claim of having ‘endorsed’ Trump’s campaign

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(Last Updated On: October 11, 2020)

Taliban spokesman, Zabihullah Mujahid early Sunday denied having endorsed US President Donald Trump’s re-election campaign and said his words had been misinterpreted.

Mujahid’s denial came after CBS News ran a story late Saturday night stating that Mujahid told CBS News in a phone interview, “We hope he will win the election and wind up US military presence in Afghanistan.” 

CBS News also reported that the militant group expressed some concern about Trump’s health after he was hospitalized with Coronavirus. 

“When we heard about Trump being COVID-19 positive, we got worried for his health, but seems he is getting better,” another Taliban senior leader told CBS News.

Mujahid meanwhile took to Twitter early Sunday and said: “US news outlet CBS News has interpreted and published my remarks incorrectly. Nothing of the sort has been communicated as publicized by them.”

CBS News also quoted a Taliban member as having said: “Trump might be ridiculous for the rest of the world, but he is sane and wise man for the Taliban.”

Another senior member of the Taliban praised the president, according to CBS News, and said:  “Honestly, Trump was much more honest with us than we thought, even we were stunned with his offer to meet Taliban in Camp David.”

Last year, Trump disclosed that he had invited the Taliban for peace talks at Camp David – but canceled the plans after the Taliban killed a US soldier.

Axios meanwhile reported that Trump campaign spokesperson Tim Murtaugh said in an emailed statement, “We reject their support and the Taliban should know that the President will always protect American interests by any means necessary, unlike Joe Biden who opposed taking out Osama bin Laden and Qasem Soleimani.”

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Pakistan seal semi-final T20 World Cup spot after beating Namibia 

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(Last Updated On: November 2, 2021)

Pakistan defeated Namibia by 45 runs on Tuesday night in Abu Dhabi to become the first side to qualify for the semi-finals of the T20 World Cup 2021.

Chasing a formidable target of 190, Namibia gave a good account of their ability and promise and eventually finished with 144-5 as Pakistan collected the two points they needed to go through to the next round.

Pakistan’s total is the second-highest in this tournament, behind Afghanistan’s 190-4 against Scotland in Sharjah.

Afghanistan’s next T20 World Cup match is on Wednesday against India.

 

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COVID-19

US administers over 420 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines

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(Last Updated On: October 31, 2021)

The United States has administered 420,657,683 doses of COVID-19 vaccines in the country as of Saturday morning and distributed 518,701,225 doses, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) said.

The agency said 221,221,467 people had received at least one dose, while 192,244,927 people were fully vaccinated as of 6am on Saturday.

The CDC tally includes two-dose vaccines from Moderna and Pfizer/BioNTech, as well as Johnson & Johnson’s one-shot vaccine, Reuters reported.

About 17.7 million people have received a booster dose of either Pfizer, Moderna or Johnson & Johnson’s COVID-19 vaccine.

On November 8, the United States is lifting the extraordinary travel restrictions that have barred most non-U.S. citizens who within the last 14 days have been in Britain, the 26 Schengen countries in Europe without border controls, Ireland, China, India, South Africa, Iran and Brazil. 

It is also imposing new rules requiring nearly all foreign adult air visitors to be vaccinated against COVID-19.

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IEA arrests two gunmen after wedding party shooting 

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(Last Updated On: October 31, 2021)

Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan (IEA) deputy minister of information and culture Zabiullah Mujahid confirmed on Sunday that two people have been arrested following the shooting at a wedding party on Friday night. 

Mujahid said in a series of tweets on Sunday that three people, claiming to be IEA members, had arrived at the venue in a village in Nangarhar and ordered them to stop the music, before opening fire on the guests. 

Three people died and several were wounded, he said.

“Two suspects have been arrested in connection with the incident and one has escaped and is being pursued,” Mujahid tweeted.

 Mujahid said that the gunmen were handed over to officials.

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