- The Washington Times - Sunday, May 14, 2006

Taliban threat

The ambassador from Afghanistan is worried by the increase in attacks from remnants of the brutal Taliban regime and is appealing to the United States and NATO for more help for his beleaguered government.

Ambassador Said Tayeb Jawad told the Associated Press that the Taliban, which sheltered Osama bin Laden and his al Qaeda terrorist network before U.S. forces helped overthrow the regime in 2001, has acquired sophisticated weapons and continues to maintain training camps in Pakistan.

Afghan forces “are brave, but they are very vulnerable,” he told veteran diplomatic reporter Barry Schweid.

Mr. Jawad also fears the United States will soon withdraw 3,000 troops from the country.

Diplomatic traffic

Foreign visitors in Washington this week include:


• Foreign Minister Cyril Svoboda of the Czech Republic, who presents a $1.2 million check to Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty for the relocation of its headquarters in Prague. He also meets Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice tomorrow.

• Lale Akgun, a member of the German parliament; Amel Boubekeur of the Centre for European Policy Studies in Brussels; Jonathan Faull, director-general of the European Commission Directorate-General for Freedom, Security and Justice; Hisham Hellyer of the Centre for Research in Ethnic Relations at the University of Warwick, England; Rainer Munz of the Migration Research Group in Hamburg, Germany; and Beate Winkler of the European Monitoring Centre on Racism and Xenophobia in Vienna, Austria. They participate in a forum on immigration sponsored by the Austrian Embassy.


• A delegation from Moscow consisting of Leonid Bokhanovsky, first vice president of the StroyTransGaz corporation; Pavel Gusev, chairman of the Committee on Media Relations of the Public Chamber; Alexander Konovalov, president of the Institute of Strategic Analysis; Konstantin Kosachev, chairman of the foreign relations committee in the Duma; Anatol Lieven of the New America Foundation; Sergei Markov, deputy chairman of the Committee on Public Diplomacy; Andranik Migranyan, chairman of the Institute of CIS; Svetlana Orlova, vice-speaker of the Federation Council; Valery Prozorovsky, deputy chairman of the natural resources committee in the Duma; Alexander Shokhin, president of the Russian Union of Industrialists and Entrepreneurs; and Alexander Vasilenko, public relations director for Lukoil. They participate in a World Russian Forum seminar.

• Chakib Khelil, Algeria’s minister for energy and mines, who addresses the U.S.-Algeria Business Council.


• Fernando Cepeda Ulloa of the University of the Andes, a former minister of government in Colombia. He is part of a task force that will release a study at the Inter-American Dialogue on the Organization of American States.


• Julio Borges, a presidential candidate from Venezuela’s First Justice party. He addresses the American Enterprise Institute for Public Policy Research on the state of democracy under President Hugo Chavez and his hopes to defeat the incumbent in the December presidential elections.

• Jean-Marie Guehenno, undersecretary-general for peacekeeping operations at the United Nations, who addresses the Council on Foreign Relations.


• Marco Fantini of the European Union’s Directorate General for Taxation and Customs Union, Vladimir Milov of Moscow’s Institute of Energy Policy and Andrey Ryabov of Moscow’s Institute of World Economy and International Relations. They participate in an American Enterprise Institute for Public Policy Research forum on Russian energy supplies.

Call Embassy Row at 202/636-3297, fax 202/832-7278 or e-mail jmorrison@washingtontimes.com.

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