Afghanistan

Regional News • Middle East
Kabul: Rockets strike residential areas, several killed

Twenty-three rockets have struck Kabul, Afghan, hitting areas in the centre and the north. According to Tariq Arian, spokesman for the interior ministry, the rockets were fired from a small truck. The regional Islamic State group claimed responsibility. At least eight people have been killed, over 30 wounded.

Law
Report: Australian elite troops killed Afghan civilians

According to a report by the Australian Defence Force (ADF) that looked into possible behaviour of misconduct in their own forces, 19 current or ex-special forces soldiers should be investigated by police over killings of "prisoners, farmers or civilians" in 2009-13.

The report found evidence for multiple patterns of misconduct. One example mentioned is that new soldiers were told to get their first kill by shooting prisoners, in a practice known as "flooding".

Regional News • Americas • United States
Business Insider report: Taliban sources confirm that Russia put bounties on US soldiers

According to a report from Business Insider two active Taliban commanders and one former commander have confirmed that Russia pays for bounties to attack and kill soldiers of the United States in Afghanistan.
All three sources stated that they had not participated in the program and disparaged the practice, but confirmed the existence. According to one source the groups that associate with the Taliban but are not close to the central leadership the Quetta Shura "will do anything for money, and Russia, Iran, Pakistan, and other countries will hire them for operations".

He stated that he wasn't approached by Russia himself as he was based in a different region of Afghanistan as they operate in, but regularly by Iran. According to Business Insider, an official of the NATO military intelligence has also confirmed that the practice is well-known.

Regional News • Americas • United States
White House briefs Republicans on Russian bounties on US soldiers, Democrats left out

Seven House Republicans have been briefed by White House officials on the ongoing case of alleged Russian bounties for killing soldiers of the United States by Afghani militants. While House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer have both demanded to be brief on the matter as the investigations are still ongoing and it is yet unclear if Vice President Pence and President Trump have known of the Russian activities, the Democrats have been left out of the briefing by White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows, Director of National Intelligence John Ratcliffe, and national security adviser Robert O'Brien.

Regional News • Americas • United States
Nancy Pelosi demands answers for "congress and the country" on Russian bounty operation
Nancy Pelosi at #ProtectOurCare, 2019
Nancy Pelosi at #ProtectOurCare, 2019 Credit: Senate Democrats / CC BY (Creative Commons Attribution 2.0)

On Monday, Nancy Pelosi has asked the Trump administration to brief all members of the House on recent reports that Russia offered bounties to Taliban-linked militants to kill U.S. troops in Afghanistan. Trump has denied he had any knowledge of the Russian bounty operation.

In her letter, Pelosi wrote that both "Congress and the country need answers now" and that "Congress needs to know what the intelligence community knows about this significant threat to American troops and our allies and what options are available to hold Russia accountable."

According to Kayleigh McEnany, White House press secretary, members of the congress will be briefed on Monda,y but it's uncertain whether the brief would be open to all members.

Science • Medicine
German Red Cross: More violence against medical personnel

Since March 2020, more than 200 cases in the Middle East have been documented - e.g. Syria, Iraq, Afghanistan, but also Venezuela. Basically, however, more cases have to be assumed, since the documentation in such crisis areas is difficult.

However, it can be said that the behavior of people in conflict areas does not change due to a pandemic.