Tag Archives: negotiations

Israel, Arab nations want a say in Biden’s Iran negotiations. Here’s why his advisers are skeptical.


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Congress faces the threat of another government shutdown with stimulus negotiations likely to slip into the weekend


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Dems Agree to Abandon Direct Aid for State, Local Govs in COVID Stimulus Negotiations


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White House aides reportedly stepped in to keep Trump from calling for $2,000 stimulus checks fearing it could torpedo relief negotiations


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COVID relief negotiations continue as deaths, unemployment claims spike


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McConnell lashed out at Democrats over COVID-19 stimulus negotiations, claiming his bill already addresses ‘bipartisan consensus’ and refusing to endorse the one that’s actually bipartisan


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Iran ready for more prisoner swaps with US, not negotiations

Iran ready for more prisoner swaps with US, not negotiationsIran is ready for more prisoner swaps with the United States, the Cabinet spokesman said Monday even as he reiterated the Iranian leadership’s stance that there will be no other negotiations between Tehran and Washington. The remarks by the spokesman, Ali Rabiei, were the first after a prisoner exchange over the weekend saw Iran free a Chinese-American scholar from Princeton who had been held for three years on widely criticized espionage charges. The scholar, graduate student Xiyue Wang, was freed in exchange for Iranian scientist Massoud Soleimani who had faced a federal trial in Georgia over charges he violated sanctions by trying to have biological material brought to Iran.



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Taliban commanders released as hopes rise for resumption of US peace negotiations

Taliban commanders released as hopes rise for resumption of US peace negotiationsHopes are rising for the resumption of the abandoned Taliban and US peace talks after eleven senior Taliban members were freed from prison in an exchange with three kidnapped Indian engineers. Among those freed are two former provincial governors of the Taliban and Abdul Rashid Baluch, a notorious regional leader sentenced to 18 years imprisonment for trafficking opium. The men were being held near Bagram air base outside Kabul.  It is believed American authorities must have given permission for the swap as Baluch was previously on their ‘Specially Designated Global Terrorist’ list. Last month, Donald Trump cancelled over a year’s worth of on-going peace negotiations with the Taliban after the group claimed a Kabul bomb attack that killed 11 people, including an American soldier. However, relations appear to be thawing again after Zalmay Khalilzad, the Special Representative for Afghanistan Reconciliation at the State Department, met senior Taliban leaders on Friday for clandestine talks in Islamabad. It is unclear whether the exchange of the Taliban leaders was discussed during the meeting. While the Afghan authorities do intermittently release prisoners early as gestures of goodwill it is rare to see such high-profile members of the Taliban freed. Abdul Rashid Baluch was a regional official for the group in the southwestern province of Nimroz when he was apprehended while personally escorting an almost one-tonne consignment of opium in 2014. Baluch’s arrest was trumpeted by the U.S-Afghan authorities as proof of Taliban involvement in the international drug trade. Officials said Sheikh Abdur Rahim and Mawlawi Abdur Rashid – provincial governors in the Taliban administration when it was defeated by U.S-led forces in 2001 – were also released. The three Indians set free were working as engineers in the northern Afghan province of Baghlan when they were kidnapped in May 2018, along with four other colleagues. One man was released in March but the whereabouts of the three remaining Indians is unknown.



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Netanyahu forges slightly ahead amid tense negotiations on who should be Israel's next leader

Netanyahu forges slightly ahead amid tense negotiations on who should be Israel's next leaderThough Gantz has won slightly more seats in Israel’s parliament than Netanyahu, he may not have the support of smaller parties needed to secure a win.



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Afghan president narrowly avoids Taliban bomb in worst violence since collapse of US negotiations

Afghan president narrowly avoids Taliban bomb in worst violence since collapse of US negotiationsTaliban suicide bombers killed at least 48 people and wounded dozens more in two blasts Tuesday – one at a campaign rally for the president and the other in Kabul – with the insurgents warning of more violence ahead of elections. The first attack saw a motorcyclist detonate a suicide bomb at a checkpoint leading to a rally where Ashraf Ghani, the president, was addressing supporters in central Parwan province, just north of the capital, killing 26 and wounding 42. Just over an hour later another blast also claimed by the Taliban rocked central Kabul near the US embassy. Authorities initially did not give casualty figures, but later said 22 people had been killed and a further 38 wounded. The explosions came after Donald Trump, the US president, abruptly ended talks with the Taliban earlier this month over a deal that would have allowed the US to begin withdrawing troops from its longest war. One of the bombs was detonated near the US Embassy in Kabul Credit: AP Photo/Ebrahim Noroozi In a statement sent to media claiming responsibility for both blasts, Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid said the attack near Mr Ghani's rally was deliberately aimed at disrupting the September 28 elections. "We already warned people not to attend election rallies, if they suffer any losses that is their own responsibility," the statement said. An image from the scene near Mr Ghani's rally, roughly an hour's drive north of Kabul, showed the remains of a burnt motorcycle, with a body on top, covered by a blanket and next to a badly damaged police car. Taliban control in Afghanistan Women and children were among the causalities, Parwan hospital director Abdul Qasim Sangin said. The president, who was speaking to his supporters at the time of the blast, was unhurt but later condemned the attack, saying the incident proved the Taliban had no real interest in reconciliation. "As the Taliban continue their crimes, they once again prove that they are not interested in peace and stability in Afghanistan," said Mr Ghani in a statement.



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