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Kabul Military Academy Attacked as City Reels From Bombing


Council on Foreign Relations Newsletter If you are unable to see the message below, click here to view. January 29, 2018 Daily News Brief   TOP OF THE AGENDA Kabul Military Academy Attacked as City Reels From Bombing Eleven Afghan servicemen were killed and sixteen others wounded in an attack on a military academy in Kabul (Tolo) this morning, according to the city's police chief. The assault is the latest in a recent upsurge in violence in the capital. The self-proclaimed Islamic State said it was behind the Monday attack (Guardian), which came just two days after a suicide bombing killed more than a hundred people (CNN) when an ambulance packed with explosives detonated in Kabul. The bombing, as well as an attack on a hotel in the city a week earlier, was claimed by the Afghan Taliban (Reuters). Targets of other attacks over the past month have included the aid organization Save the Children and a Shia cultural center.  ANALYSIS "It could [be] that the militants have decided attacking the capital is a more effective way of undermining confidence in the government and attracting international attention than trying to capture and retain territory in rural areas," Secunder Kermani writes for the BBC. "Although the Taliban has demonstrated a surprising ability to survive and conduct high-profile attacks in cities like Kabul, it is weaker today than most recognize," Seth G. Jones writes for Foreign Affairs. "The current [U.S.] administration continues to operate on the false assumption that a military victory is possible. We've been fighting for seventeen years and I don't even think that there's a cohesive consensus on how many lives have been lost—Afghan, American, or otherwise—and money that's been spent," May Jeong said in an interview with Foreign Policy Interrupted.  PACIFIC RIM Australia on Path to Be Top Weapons Exporter Australia will offer billions in government-backed loans (FT) to weapons manufacturers in a bid to become one of the world's top ten arms exporters, Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull said on Monday. The country currently ranks twentieth. JAPAN: The foreign minister met his Chinese counterpart in Beijing to push for improved ties (AP) between the countries and join in a push against North Korea's weapons program. This CFR Backgrounder looks at North Korea's military capabilities.  SOUTH AND CENTRAL ASIA India Predicts High Growth After Slowdown India's economy is expected to grow up to 7.5 percent (BBC) in the 2017–18 fiscal year, according to a government forecast, exceeding the previous year's growth of 6.8 percent. MIDDLE EAST AND NORTH AFRICA Yemeni Leader Calls for Saudi Action Against Separatists Exiled President Abed Rabbo Mansour al-Hadi has called on the Saudi-led coalition (DW) fighting Houthi rebels in Yemen to intervene in Aden, the interim capital, following deadly attacks on Sunday by separatists allied with the United Arab Emirates. At least ten people were killed in the clashes (Al Jazeera). SYRIA: The Syrian opposition will boycott peace talks (Guardian) in Sochi, Russia, early this week. The UN special envoy to Syria will attend the talks. SUB-SAHARAN AFRICA Trump Praises African Partners In a letter to African leaders gathered in Addis Ababa over the past week, U.S. President Donald J. Trump said that the United States "profoundly respects" its partnership with the region, adding that U.S. troops fight "side by side" with their African counterparts (DW) against militants on the continent. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson will visit up to six African nations in March, according to the letter. ZIMBABWE: The finance minister said the economy could grow up to 6 percent this year (Reuters) amid reforms by the new government of President Emmerson Mnangagwa aimed at attracting foreign investors and loans from international lenders. EUROPE Anti-Putin Protesters Call for Election Boycott Thousands in Moscow and other cities protested on Sunday (Bloomberg) against President Vladimir Putin, who has been in power for nearly two decades and is seeking reelection in March. Opposition figure Alexei Navalny, one of several hundred detained during the protests, has called for a boycott of the vote. In Foreign Affairs, Anton Barbashin discusses Navalny's opposition movement. GERMANY: The Interior Ministry said on Monday that the country has "largely completed" its commitment under an EU scheme to resettle qualified asylum seekers (DW). A far smaller number of migrants have been relocated across the bloc than was initially projected. AMERICAS ELN Claims Deadly Attack on Police Station A branch of the National Liberation Army (ELN), a Colombian rebel group, said it carried out a police station bombing (Colombia Reports) in the city of Barranquilla on Saturday that killed five officers. At least two more policemen were killed in other attacks in the country's north. HONDURAS: President Juan Orlando Hernandez was sworn in for a second term (BBC) on Saturday amid protests by the opposition, who claim the November election was rigged. UNITED STATES Trump Suggests Retaliation for 'Unfair' EU Trade Policy President Trump said the European Union has maintained an unfair trade policy (WSJ) with the United States, which he said could respond to the bloc's "detriment." An EU spokesman said the bloc is "ready to react swiftly" if the United States restricts its imports (EUobserver) from the region. CFR's Edward Alden looks at U.S. trade imbalances. The U.S. Treasury is expected to publish a list of Russian individuals and firms with links to the Kremlin that could be subject to new sanctions (FT).          Council on Foreign Relations — 58 East 68th Street — New York, NY 10065 CFR does not share email addresses with third parties. Forward This Email | Subscribe to CFR Newsletters | Unsubscribe - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -  


Date: January 29, 2018 at 11:04PM