01 March 2020 Military News
- US-Taliban Deal Hits First Speedbump VOA 01 Mar 2020 -- Less than 24 hours after the United States signed a landmark agreement with the Afghan Taliban in Doha, its implementation has already hit its first speedbump.
- Afghan Leader Rejects Prisoner Release in US-Taliban Deal VOA 01 Mar 2020 -- Afghan President Ashraf Ghani said Sunday his government has made no commitment to release 5,000 Taliban prisoners as part of a landmark peace deal the United States signed with the Islamist insurgent group Saturday.
- Afghan President Casts Doubt On Key Aspect Of U.S.-Taliban Peace Deal RFE/RL 01 Mar 2020 -- Afghan President Ashraf Ghani has questioned a key component of an agreement between the United
- Afghan President Ghani: Kabul not committed to releasing 5,000 Taliban prisoners Press TV 01 Mar 2020 -- Just one day after the United States and the Taliban militant group signed a peace agreement, Afghanistan's government has announced that it does not consider itself bound by the terms of the deal to free thousands of Taliban prisoners.
- Afghans Cast Doubt On Key Aspect Of U.S.-Taliban Peace Deal As Trump Vows 'Immediate' Start To U.S. Pullout RFE/RL 01 Mar 2020 -- Afghan President Ashraf Ghani has questioned a key precondition for Afghan government negotiations with the Taliban laid out in a U.S.-Taliban deal aimed at ending the 18-year war in Afghanistan. States and the Taliban aimed at ending the 18-year war in Afghanistan.
- Trump hails pact with Taliban, vows to meet with leaders of militant group Press TV 01 Mar 2020 -- US President Donald Trump has vowed to personally meet with leaders of the Afghan militant group that the American military sought to root out when it led a massive invasion of Afghanistan in 2001, dismissing criticism of the deal Washington signed with Taliban.
- Taliban Peace Deal Paves Way For a US 'Power Competition' With China – Pentagon Chief Sputnik 01 Mar 2020 -- On Saturday, the Qatari capital of Doha witnessed the signing of a long-awaited peace agreement between the United States and the Taliban movement that envisages a timetable for the US to withdraw some 13,000 troops from Afghanistan.
- Iranian Foreign Ministry: US 'Has No Legal Position' to Ink Peace Agreement With Taliban Sputnik 01 Mar 2020 -- On Saturday, the US and the Taliban clinched a landmark peace agreement in Doha, which stipulates the complete withdrawal of US and NATO forces from Afghanistan over a 14 month period, including cutting troop numbers to 8,600 within 135 days.
- President Ghani Denies Commitment to Release 5,000 Taliban Prisoners Before Inter-Afghan Talks Sputnik 01 Mar 2020 -- On Saturday, the US and the Taliban signed a peace deal in Doha that will see US and allied troops pull out from Afghanistan over the next 14 months. The US will reduce its military presence to 8,600 troops in the next 135 days.
Defense Policy / Programs
- US carrier strike group enters Mediterranean amid conflicts in Libya, Syria Press TV 01 Mar 2020 -- A US aircraft carrier strike group has reportedly entered the Mediterranean Sea as the area is beset by two major conflicts – a full-blown civil war in Libya and tensions between Damascus and Turkish-backed militants in Syria.
- Secretary Michael R. Pompeo With Margaret Brennan of CBS Face the Nation US Dept. of State 01 Mar 2020
- Remarks by President Trump at the 2020 Conservative Political Action Conference | National Harbor, MD The White House 01 Mar 2020
- Remarks by President Trump Before Marine One Departure The White House 02 Mar 2020
- Yemenis seize capital of strategic al-Jawf as Saudi-led mercenaries retreat Press TV 01 Mar 2020 -- Yemen's armed forces, along with Houthi fighters from Ansarullah movement, have taken control of the strategic city of al-Hazm, the capital of the northern al-Jawf province, as Saudi-led mercenaries retreated after losing ground in the region.
- Hudaydah skies see another Saudi-led drone targeted by Yemeni fighters Press TV 01 Mar 2020 -- A drone belonging to the Saudi-led military coalition has been intercepted and targeted by Yemeni forces as it was flying in the skies over the western coastal province of Hudaydah.
- Syria State Media: Turkish Forces Target 2 Syrian Planes VOA 01 Mar 2020 -- Syrian state media (SANA) said on Sunday that Turkish forces targeted two Syrian planes over the Idlib region.
- Syria confirms Turkey shot down its fighter jets on combat mission in Idlib Press TV 01 Mar 2020 -- Syria has confirmed that Turkish forces have intercepted and shot down two Soviet-built Sukhoi Su-24 fighter jets belonging to the Syrian Air Force, with the pilots ejecting moments before the aircraft were hit.
- Syrian Jets 'Downed' As Turkey Says 'No Desire Or Intention To Clash With Russia' RFE/RL 01 Mar 2020 -- Turkey's defense minister said on March 1 that his country was "successfully" continuing its military operation in northwestern Syria against the Russian-backed regime in Damascus and that Ankara doesn't have "the desire or intention to clash with Russia."
- Two Syrian Planes Downed by Turkey Over Idlib, Pilots Safe – Reports Sputnik 01 Mar 2020 -- Earlier, the Syrian Army announced that the airspace over Idlib had been closed, and warned that it would down any aircraft breaching its airspace.
- Russia, Turkey agree to scale down tensions in Syria's Idlib People's Daily 01 Mar 2020 -- Foreign and defense officials from Russia and Turkey have reiterated their commitment to "reducing tensions on the ground" in the northwestern Syrian province of Idlib, the Russian Foreign Ministry said Saturday.
- Russia Can't Guarantee Safety of Turkish Aviation in Syria After Damascus Shuts Idlib Airspace – MoD Sputnik 01 Mar 2020 -- As tensions run high in Syria's Idlib amid Thursday's spike in hostilities, the Syrian state news agency SANA reported on Sunday that the "Turkish regime's terrorist forces" downed two aircraft - thought to be fighter jets - belonging to the Damascus forces.
- Kremlin Responds to Erdogan's Request That Russia 'Step Aside' in Syria Sputnik 01 Mar 2020 -- On Saturday, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan told reporters that he had asked Russian President Vladimir Putin to "get out of Turkey's way" and to leave Ankara "face to face" with Damascus in the renegade Syrian province of Idlib.
- Turkish drone strikes kill over two dozen Syrian soldiers in Idlib: Monitor Press TV 01 Mar 2020 -- Turkish drone strikes have reportedly killed 26 Syrian soldiers in northwestern Syria, in an apparent response to the deaths of 33 Turkish soldiers who were killed on Thursday during a Syrian army offensive against terrorists in Idlib.
- Syria closes northwestern airspace, downs 3 Turkish drone Press TV 01 Mar 2020 -- Syria has shut its airspace over the country's northwest, particularly the embattled Idlib province, warning to bring down any aircraft that violates it.
- Syrian Air Defence Opens Fire at Turkish Drones Near Hama Sputnik 01 Mar 2020 -- Syrian government troops opened fire on Sunday at aerial targets near the western city of Hama that a Syrian military source identified to Sputnik as Turkish drones.
- Syrian Army Will Seek to Down Any Aircraft Breaching Airspace - State Media Sputnik 01 Mar 2020 -- Tensions escalated in Syria's Idlib province earlier this week after 36 Turkish soldiers were killed and over 30 injured in an airstrike.
- Israeli premier pledges to annex more lands of West Bank 'within weeks' if re-elected Press TV 01 Mar 2020 -- In an apparent attempt by Israel's scandal-hit premier to secure votes on the eve of a decisive general election, Benjamin Netanyahu has pledged to annex further parts of the occupied West Bank "within weeks" provided that he is re-elected.
- Myanmar army kills five Rohingya Muslims, including a child, in Rakhine Press TV 01 Mar 2020 -- At least five Rohingya Muslims, including a child, have been killed and several others injured during clashes in Myanmar's western state of Rakhine, where state-sponsored violence has prevailed in recent years.
- Somalia's Sufi Muslim Leaders Surrender to Government VOA 01 Mar 2020 -- The leaders of a Sufi Muslim group turned themselves into the custody of the Somali government Saturday after fighting left 22 people dead in central Somalia.
- Putin Says Oil Prices 'Acceptable' Ahead Of OPEC+ Meeting RFE/RL 01 Mar 2020 -- Russian President Vladimir Putin has called current oil price levels "acceptable" in a possible sign that Moscow is willing to bend when the world's biggest oil exporters gather this week in Vienna to discuss supply curbs as coronavirus effects pummel oil demand and prices.
- Epidemic won't spark financial crisis in China Global Times 01 Mar 2020 -- China is not facing a financial system crisis, despite mounting pressure from the coronavirus epidemic on the economy and global stock market routs, but further macro stabilizing measures, including more liquidity injections, might be necessary, analysts said on Sunday.
- Commissioner's office of Chinese foreign ministry urges U.S. to stop condoning anti-China suspects in Hong Kong People's Daily 01 Mar 2020 -- The Office of the Commissioner of the Chinese Foreign Ministry in the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR) on Saturday urged the United States to immediately stop condoning anti-China and trouble making suspects in Hong Kong.
- Tajik Ruling Party Expected To Secure Victory In First Parliamentary Elections Since Key Opposition Banned RFE/RL 01 Mar 2020 -- Tajiks voted in parliamentary elections on March 1 in which President Emomali Rahmon's ruling party was widely expected to secure a sweeping victory, with only one opposition party participating in the vote.
- Tajiks go to polls in parliamentary elections Press TV 01 Mar 2020 -- People in Tajikistan are going to the polls in parliamentary elections, to pick 63 lawmakers from candidates of seven political parties, who are competing for the lower house of legislature.
- Tajikistan Holds First Parliamentary Elections Since Banning Key Opposition RFE/RL 01 Mar 2020 -- Voting has begun in Tajikistan in the authoritarian Central Asian nation's first parliamentary elections since a ban was imposed nearly five years ago on the Islamic Renaissance Party (IRPT), a leading opposition group.
- Political crisis grips Malaysia as Mahathir says 'betrayed' by new PM Press TV 01 Mar 2020 -- Crisis continues to overshadow Malaysia's politics, with former prime minister Mahathir Mohamad rebuking the designation of Muhyiddin Yassin as his successor, saying he feels "betrayed" by the newly appointed premier.
- Iraq's Prime Minister-designate resigns after parliament fails to approve cabinet Press TV 01 Mar 2020 -- Iraq's Prime Minister-designate Mohammad Tawfiq Allawi has withdrawn his candidacy after the parliament failed to approve his new government.
- Iraqi Prime Minister Designate Drops Out After Failing to Secure Parliament Support - Reports Sputnik 01 Mar 2020 -- Earlier on Sunday, the Iraqi parliament held an extraordinary session to vote on the government of Prime Minister-designate Muhammad Tawfiq Allawi, who was appointed to the post on 1 February.
- A Hard Lesson Learned On Uzbekistan's Road To Economic Reform RFE/RL 01 Mar 2020 -- Uzbek Prime Minister Abdullo Aripov has threatened to close down all the privately owned employment agencies in the country -- and for now that might be a good idea.
- UN Decries Lack of Reforms and Widespread Abuse in Eritrea VOA 01 Mar 2020 -- A U.N. investigator is condemning an Eritrean crackdown on fundamental freedoms and religious practice in a new report, as well as the country's harsh, indefinite military service and widespread abuse.
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