January 14th, 2011
03:08 PM ET

Bomb kills 7 in Afghanistan

A makeshift bomb exploded Friday in southeastern Afghanistan, killing seven Afghans, NATO said.

The bomb struck the victims' vehicle in Arghandab district of Zabul province.

"Our thoughts are with the families of the victims at this difficult time, said U.S. Air Force Col. Charles Toplikar, of NATO's International Security Assistance Force. "This is a senseless attack on innocent Afghan civilians using indiscriminate weapons."

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Filed under: Civilian deaths • IEDs
Obama and Pakistani president discuss terrorism and Afghanistan
January 14th, 2011
02:59 PM ET

Obama and Pakistani president discuss terrorism and Afghanistan

U.S. President Barack Obama and Pakistani President Asif Zardari met at the White House on Friday.

Their discussion focused on fighting terrorism and "the importance of cooperating toward a peaceful and stable outcome in Afghanistan," the White House said in a statement.

"The President underscored the importance of the U.S.-Pakistan relationship and our continued support for Pakistan," it said.

Zardari is in Washington to attend a memorial service Friday for diplomat Richard Holbrooke, who was Obama's envoy in Pakistan and Afghanistan. Holbrooke died last month.

U.S. Vice President Joe Biden huddled with Zardari on Wednesday in Islamabad during his unannounced visit to the region. Biden also met with Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani and senior military officials.

- CNN's Elise Labott contributed to this report

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Filed under: Daily Developments • Obama • Pakistan
5 stars for Petraeus?
January 14th, 2011
08:29 AM ET

5 stars for Petraeus?

Members of the Senate and House armed services committees currently are talking to the Pentagon about the next round of hearings on Afghanistan, trying to coordinate sessions with the U.S. commander there, Gen. David Petraeus.

When Petraeus, probably the best-known military man in the wars of Iraq and Afghanistan, returns to answer questions, the television lights will shine on the four stars he wears on each shoulder.

Now a new debate is swirling in Washington, thanks to an opinion piece in the Wall Street Journal pushing for Petraeus to get a fifth star, like military giants of the past. FULL POST


Filed under: Troops
26 arrested for smuggling thousands of Afghans
Afghan migrants are detained in a Greek port in May 2010
January 14th, 2011
08:14 AM ET

26 arrested for smuggling thousands of Afghans

Italian police supported by the European Police Agency arrested 26 people this week suspected of smuggling thousands of illegal immigrants from Afghanistan into Europe.

The smuggling network was responsible for transporting about 200 hundreds migrants a month since August 2008, according to a news release from Europol. Twenty percent of those moved through the network were children, the police agency said. FULL POST