January 26th, 2010
04:50 PM ET

Around the Web: Germany to send more troops, reports say

Germany is poised to send more troops to Afghanistan, according to several news reports Tuesday.

"Chancellor Angela Merkel said she will send 500 additional German troops to Afghanistan, bowing to U.S. pressure to widen a mission that most Germans reject,” reports Bloomberg’s Tony Czuczka.  

“The extra troops will protect the civilian population and train Afghan forces to help President Hamid Karzai’s government assume more responsibility for security, Merkel said. Another 350 soldiers will be put on standby for Afghanistan, she said.”

German Chancellor Angela Merkel is quoted by the BBC as saying: "I think that if Germany plans to train at least one-third of the police forces in Afghanistan, if it doubles what it is doing in terms of civil reconstruction and we make our entire approach more effective and harmonize it with the international community, plus adds 500 troops and a flexible reserve of 350 troops, then we have nothing to be ashamed of."


January 26th, 2010
11:14 AM ET
January 26th, 2010
11:12 AM ET

Photo spotlight: Balloons in Kabul

Kabul, Afghanistan - I don't know why but I just didn't expect to see something as frivolous as a balloon seller plying his trade on the ravaged streets of Kabul. It is a joyless city on many levels, but it's encouraging to see this sign of childhood fun. For many children in Kabul, their toys are made from the trash – a rubber inner tube from a bicycle wheel, simple pieces of wood fashioned into a plane or a kite made from salvaged plastic. For many, a balloon would be a real treat – something to treasure and guard jealously.

January 26th, 2010
09:15 AM ET
January 26th, 2010
08:56 AM ET

New blast in Kabul; arrest in last week's attack

KABUL, Afghanistan - The Taliban has claimed responsibility for what it called a suicide vehicle attack that ripped through an area near a U.S. military base in Kabul on Tuesday, authorities said.

The attack came as Afghan security forces arrested a man over last week's deadly assault on key government sites in the heart of Kabul.

Afghan authorities said Tuedsay's blast injured as many as five people, but Taliban spokesman Zabullah Mujahid claimed the strike killed 25 soldiers and damaged three tanks.

The NATO-led command said the explosion occurred around 5 p.m. outside the main gate at Camp Phoenix in the outskirts of the capital. FULL POST

Filed under: Kabul attacks