Diplomatic Briefing

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Archive for September 5, 2019

Newsline: South Africa closes embassy in Nigeria after xenophobic violence

South Africa has temporarily closed its diplomatic missions in Nigeria following reprisal attacks by Nigerians triggered by xenophobic violence in South Africa. Between Sunday and Wednesday, mobs looted and destroyed shops, many of them foreign-owned, in South Africa’s commercial hub, Johannesburg. Nigeria’s government has been outspoken in its condemnation of the violence. South Africa’s Foreign Minister, Naledi Pandor, called the violence an embarrassment for her country. “Our government regrets all violence against foreign-owned stores or Africans from other countries who are resident in South Africa,” she was quoted as saying by national broadcaster SABC. She ordered the closure of the country’s high commission in the Nigerian capital, Abuja, and its mission in Lagos, following threats made to the diplomatic staff. (https://www.bbc.com/news/world-africa-49593030) Police say the unrest has subsided and more than 420 arrests have been made.

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Newsline: 12 killed in Taliban suicide attack near U.S. Embassy in Kabul

An American service member was among at least a dozen people killed in a Taliban suicide car bomb near the U.S. Embassy in the Afghan capital of Kabul on Thursday. The U.S. soldier, along with a Romanian soldier and at least 10 Afghan civilians were killed in the attack. Another 42 people wounded in the explosion that rocked the busy diplomatic district. (https://www.foxnews.com/world/taliban-suicide-bomb-us-embassy-afghanistan) It was the second such attack this week, seemingly underscoring the government warnings that a preliminary U.S.-Taliban deal on ending America’s longest war is moving dangerously quickly. Both the U.S. and the Taliban have stepped up attacks on one another amid the U.S.-led peace talks that attempt to end nearly two decades of war, officials say. Thursday’s bombing took place following a ninth round of peace talks Sunday.