Category Archives: Human Rights

General Officer-Level Talks Between the United States and the DPRK on the Repatriation of Remains

On Sunday, July 15, representatives from the United States held the first General Officer-level talks with the DPRK since 2009. They met to discuss the return of U.S. service members’ remains missing since the Korean War. This meeting was aimed at fulfilling one of the commitments made by Chairman Kim at the Singapore Summit. Today’s talks were productive and cooperative and resulted in firm commitments.

Working level meetings between U.S. and North Korean officials will begin on Monday, July 16, to ?coordinate the next steps, including the transfer of remains already collected in the DPRK.

Additionally, both sides agreed to re-commence field operations in the DPRK to search for the estimated 5,300 Americans who never returned home.

Source: U.S. Department of State

Arab League chief meets Chinese VP in Beijing

Cairo (UNA-OIC) � Secretary General of the Arab League Ahmed Aboul-Gheit, who is in Beijing to attend ministerial meetings ahead of the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation (FOCAC), met Monday with Chinese Vice President Wang Qishan.

In a statement issued in Cairo, Arab League spokesman Mahmoud Afifi said the two sides discussed means to boost Sino-Arab relations in the coming stage, based on the historical and long-established relationships between China and Arab countries. He added that the meeting also addressed the current international and Arab developments.

Afifi expressed the secretary general’s appreciation of China for its strong support for the Palestinian cause, and for the Chinese technical assistance to a number of Arab states.

The Arab world is looking forward to enhancing its relationship with China at the economic and political levels, Aboul-Gheit told Wang.

For his part, the Chinese vice president hailed the good relations between his country and the Arab world. He pointed out that China fully supports efforts exerted to achieve security and stability in the Arab world and to reach a comprehensive and just settlement to the Palestinian question.

Source: International Islamic News Agency

Arab League chief meets Chinese VP in Beijing

Cairo (UNA-OIC) � Secretary General of the Arab League Ahmed Aboul-Gheit, who is in Beijing to attend ministerial meetings ahead of the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation (FOCAC), met Monday with Chinese Vice President Wang Qishan.

In a statement issued in Cairo, Arab League spokesman Mahmoud Afifi said the two sides discussed means to boost Sino-Arab relations in the coming stage, based on the historical and long-established relationships between China and Arab countries. He added that the meeting also addressed the current international and Arab developments.

Afifi expressed the secretary general’s appreciation of China for its strong support for the Palestinian cause, and for the Chinese technical assistance to a number of Arab states.

The Arab world is looking forward to enhancing its relationship with China at the economic and political levels, Aboul-Gheit told Wang.

For his part, the Chinese vice president hailed the good relations between his country and the Arab world. He pointed out that China fully supports efforts exerted to achieve security and stability in the Arab world and to reach a comprehensive and just settlement to the Palestinian question.

Source: International Islamic News Agency

Farmers advised to start sesame cultivation

Agriculture experts have advised the farmers to start cultivation of sesame crop till mid of July.

According to a spokesman of the agriculture department Najaf Abbas, sesame is an important essential part of our food requirements.

He said the best time for sesame cultivation was from June to mid-July.

Therefore, farmers should start sesame cultivation immediately and use its high quality seeds to get bumper yield.

Source: Radio Pakistan

Dozens Killed In Afghanistan Despite Government-Declared Truce

At least 27 people have been reported killed in several attacks across Afghanistan on the first day of a cease-fire unilaterally declared by the government.

Taliban militants on June 12 overran a district capital in the northern province of Faryab, killing at least eight people, mainly members of the Afghan security forces, local officials said.

Hundreds of militants stormed checkpoints and police headquarters across the province, including district capital Kohistan in the overnight attack, provincial council member Manan Qateh said.

Mohammad Panah, the district governor, was among those killed in the attack, according to provincial councilor Rahmatullah Turkistani.

In neighboring Sar-e Pul Province, at least 14 members of the security forces were killed and 25 were wounded in an overnight attack by Taliban fighters, provincial council member Noor Aga Noori said. Four wounded soldiers were taken hostage.

The Taliban claimed responsibility for the attacks in Faryab and Sar-e Pul provinces.

Meanwhile, in the eastern province of Ghazni five members of the security forces were killed when a suicide bomber detonated a Humvee armored vehicle packed with explosives at the gate of Moqor district center, officials said.

At least 26 people were wounded in the attack, said Arif Noori, spokesman for the Ghazni governor.

Noori blamed the Taliban for the attack, but no group has claimed responsibility so far.

Afghan President Ashraf Ghani has announced that police and troops would halt hostilities with the Taliban from June 12 until around June 20 for Eid al-Fitr, the holiday that caps off the Islamic fasting month of Ramadan.

However, he said that operations against other groups, including the Islamic State extremist group, would continue.

The Taliban said its fighters would stop attacking Afghan security forces but only for the first three days of Eid al-Fitr, which begins at the end of this week. The militants also said they would continue attacking U.S.-led NATO troops.

Also on June 12, Pakistan’s army chief, General Qamar Javed Bajwa, traveled to Kabul where he was set to meet with President Ghani, Pakistani military spokesman Major General Asif Ghafoor said.

Ghafoor tweeted that Pakistan “wishes to see a national unity government in Kabul and US/NATO succeeding to bring peace in Afghanistan.”

The visit comes amid tensions between Afghanistan and Pakistan, which is accused of harboring militant groups, including the Afghan Taliban. Islamabad denies the charge.

Copyright (c) 2015. RFE/RL, Inc. Reprinted with the permission of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, 1201 Connecticut Ave NW, Ste 400, Washington DC 20036.

Secretary Pompeo’s Meeting with Mexican Foreign Secretary Videgaray

The below is attributable to Spokesperson Heather Nauert:?

U.S. Secretary of State Mike R. Pompeo met with Mexican Foreign Secretary Luis Videgaray today in Washington, DC. They discussed the recent tariff announcements and the importance of concluding an updated NAFTA agreement. They reviewed the vital nature of our cooperation on stemming the flow of illicit drugs and irregular migrants. The Secretary recognized Mexico’s leadership in coordinating diplomatic efforts on Venezuela at the Organization of American States and in the Lima Group process.

Source: U.S. Department of State