Afghanistan

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RTH10260
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Re: Afghanistan

#26

Post by RTH10260 »

Russia the tricky Dicky, is it still Obamas fault or can we picture Trump responsible after 100 days?
US general in Afghanistan suggests Russia arming the Taliban

KABUL, Afghanistan (AP) — The United States must confront Russia for providing weapons to the Taliban for use against American-backed forces in Afghanistan, top U.S. military officials said Monday.

At a news conference with Defense Secretary Jim Mattis at his side, Gen. John Nicholson, the American commander in Afghanistan, wouldn't provide specifics about Russia's role in Afghanistan. But said he would "not refute" that Moscow's involvement includes giving weapons to the Taliban.

Earlier Monday, a senior U.S. military official told reporters in Kabul that Russia was giving machine guns and other medium-weight weapons. The Taliban are using the weapons in the southern provinces of Helmand, Kandahar and Uruzgan, according to the official, who briefed journalists on intelligence information on condition of anonymity.
https://apnews.com/dbc0ed6fc2184dc59eab ... he-Taliban

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Chilidog
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Re: Afghanistan

#27

Post by Chilidog »

RTH10260 wrote:Sounds like the MOAB was a just a big publicity noise and not much other results.

Best read the article, not really good quotes to pick.
Few clues on casualties at site of huge U.S. bomb in Afghanistan

By Ahmed Sultan | ACHIN DISTRICT, AFGHANISTAN

The remote site in eastern Afghanistan where the U.S. military dropped its largest non-nuclear bomb ever deployed in combat earlier this month bears signs of the weapon's power, but little evidence of how much material and human damage it inflicted.
http://www.reuters.com/article/us-afgha ... SKBN17P0HX

this quote
The U.S. military has said that ongoing fighting had prevented media or independent investigators from visiting the site, and Afghan soldiers said special forces from both countries were still engaging the enemy in the area.
obviously there were survivors

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woodworker
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Re: Afghanistan

#28

Post by woodworker »

Russia is sending weapons to the Taliban - deja vu all over again.

Russia is sending weapons to Taliban, top U.S. general confirms

By Thomas Gibbons-Neff April 24 at 12:56 PM

KABUL The general in charge of U.S. forces in Afghanistan appeared to confirm Monday that Russia is sending weapons to the Taliban, an intervention that will likely further complicate the 15-year-old war here and the Kremlins relations with the United States. ... When asked by reporters, Gen. John Nicholson did not dispute claims that the Taliban is receiving weapons and other supplies from the Russians.

. . .

We continue to get reports of this assistance, Nicholson said, speaking to reporters alongside Defense Secretary Jim Mattis. We support anyone who wants to help us advance the reconciliation process, but anyone who arms belligerents who perpetuate attacks like the one we saw two days ago in Mazar-e Sharif is not the best way forward to a peaceful reconciliation.

. . .

A senior U.S. military official, who spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss intelligence on the issue, said the Russians have increased their supply of equipment and small arms to the Taliban over the past 18 months. The official said the Russians have been sending weapons, including medium and heavy machine guns, to the Taliban under the guise that the material would be used to fight the Islamic State in eastern Afghanistan. Instead, the official said, the weapons were showing up in some of Afghanistans southern provinces, including Helmand and Kandahar both areas with little Islamic State presence.
. . .

Any weapons being funneled here from a foreign country would be a violation of international law unless they were coming to the government of Afghanistan, Mattis said, speaking during his first visit to Afghanistan as defense secretary. He added that it would have to be dealt with as such."

Is Mad Dog saying that St. Ronnie violated international law?

Source: https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/che ... -confirms/
bring out the tumbrils -- lots of them.

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Re: Afghanistan

#29

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The long-anticipated return of Afghan warlord Gulbuddin Hekmatyar is here

By Pamela Constable April 29 at 5:33 PM

KABUL — Fugitive warlord Gulbuddin Hekmatyar on Saturday made his first public appearance in Afghanistan after nearly two decades underground, calling on Taliban insurgents to “join the peace caravan and stop this pointless holy war.” He also urged all political parties to reconcile and seek change “without bloodshed.”

The return of Hekmatyar, 69, who spoke at an outdoor ceremony in a government compound in Laghman province, represented a sorely needed success for the beleaguered government of President Ashraf Ghani, who invited him to return home peacefully last fall in hopes it would encourage the Taliban to follow suit.

But his homecoming was fraught with tension, and his ­expected arrival in Kabul was ­delayed by disputes over the ­release of prisoners from his former antigovernment militia. Also, his remarks had a strong anti-Western theme and were critical of the U.S.-led military campaign against the Taliban, which he compared to the Vietnam War and the Soviet quagmire in Afghanistan.
https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/as ... story.html

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Re: Afghanistan

#30

Post by Lani »

Kabul bomb: Diplomatic zone attack kills dozens
A powerful vehicle bomb has hit the diplomatic area of the Afghan capital, Kabul, killing at least 80 people and injuring 350.

It struck close to the German embassy in Zanbaq Square, with civilians said to be the main casualties.

The morning rush-hour blast was so strong it blew out windows and doors hundreds of metres away.

No group has yet said it carried out the bombing, but the Taliban and IS have both been behind recent attacks
http://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-40102903

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Re: Afghanistan

#31

Post by RTH10260 »

alternate
Kabul blast: Attack kills 80 near diplomatic area in Afghanistan
By Ehsan Popalzai, Faith Karimi and Laura Smith-Spark, CNN
Updated 1331 GMT (2131 HKT) May 31, 2017

A massive blast rocked Kabul's diplomatic quarter during the morning rush hour on May 31, the latest attack to hit the Afghan capital. / AFP

Kabul, Afghanistan (CNN)A huge suicide bomb ripped through a secure area of Kabul at the height of the Wednesday morning rush hour, killing at least 80 people and wounding more than 300, Afghan officials said.

The blast, which came a few days into the Muslim holy month of Ramadan, was one of the deadliest to hit the Afghan capital in recent years.
The bomb exploded in the diplomatic quarter near the German Embassy and the Afghan presidential palace. The streets were packed with commuters, women shopping and children going to school and the blast appears likely to result in a high civilian death toll.
http://edition.cnn.com/2017/05/31/asia/ ... atic-area/


Video clip taken from accross the city
ABBC3_SPOILER_SHOW

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Addie
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Re: Afghanistan

#32

Post by Addie »

CNN
7 dead, dozens hurt after blasts rock Kabul protester's funeral

Kabul, Afghanistan (CNN)Seven people died Saturday in Kabul when suicide bombers struck the funeral of a man killed during anti-government protests, Afghan official said.

"Three big bangs" went off at the funeral of Salem Izadyar, the son of Mohammad Alam Izadyar, first deputy chairman of the Afghan Senate, a witness told CNN.

The Taliban denied involvement in the funeral attack, which injured 119 people.

The blasts were from three suicide bombings, said the government's chief executive, Abdullah Abdullah, who attended the funeral and tweeted he was not harmed. Abdullah described the attack on TV, Sune Engel Rasmussen of The Guardian said on CNN.

Lawmakers and high-profile government officials attended the funeral, including those from the senator's Jamiat-e Islami party, Rasmussen said. Jamiat is a largely Tajik political movement and an adversary of the Taliban.
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Re: Afghanistan

#33

Post by RTH10260 »

Is Trump prepared to bomb the Afghanis Talibans back into the stone age ?
Seven U.S. soldiers wounded in insider attack at Afghan base: official
By Abdul Matin | MAZAR-I-SHARIF, AFGHANISTAN

At least one Afghan was killed and seven American soldiers were wounded in an "insider attack" at a base in northern Afghanistan on Saturday, a U.S. military official said.

A spokesman for the U.S. military command in Kabul said earlier comments by an Afghan official that Americans had been killed were incorrect.

But he confirmed that seven soldiers had been evacuated after being wounded in the incident at Camp Shaheen, the headquarters of the Afghan army's 209th Corps in the northern city of Mazar-i-Sharif.

At least one Afghan soldier was killed and another wounded, the U.S. official said. He could not immediately say if the suspected shooter was among the dead or wounded.

Abdul Qahar Araam, spokesman for the Afghan army's 209th Corps, announced earlier that an Afghan soldier had shot and killed four U.S. soldiers inside the base.

In a statement, Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid said an Afghan commando loyal to the militant group had opened fire on foreign "invaders", killing four and wounding four others.
http://www.reuters.com/article/us-afgha ... SKBN1980HJ

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Re: Afghanistan

#34

Post by RTH10260 »

Is this a result of Trump style extreme vetting? Or scared the ladies may drop some Taliban anchor babies? Or scared the ladies may outperform their American peer? But stupid to not encourage the female progress in a country tendinv to fall behind. And imho a snub to the Afghan government.
U.S. denies visas for Afghanistan’s all-girl robotics team
By Amanda Erickson July 2

It's not easy to get robotics equipment through customs in Afghanistan, but that didn't deter this plucky bunch.

For months, a team of six teenage girls has been scrambling to build a ball-sorting robot that will compete in an international competition. Other teams received their raw materials in March. But the box sent from America had been held up for months amid concerns about terrorism. So the young engineers improvised, building motorized machines from household materials.

They didn't have time to waste if they were going to compete in the FIRST Global Challenge, an international robotics competition to be held in Washington, D.C., this month. Young teams from around the world face off against each other, in an effort to engage people in STEM (science, technology, engineering and math).

To participate, the girls from the city of Herat in western Afghanistan needed permission to travel to the United States. So, after they persuaded their parents to let them go, they made the 500-mile journey to the U.S. Embassy in Kabul to apply for their visas. They did this twice, even though that location was targeted by a deadly truck bomb.
https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/wor ... e-the-u-s/

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Re: Afghanistan

#35

Post by RTH10260 »

then this:
On July 4 visit to Kabul, top GOP senators say U.S. needs to 'win' in Afghanistan

By Pamela Constable July 4 at 11:29 AM

KABUL — A bipartisan Senate delegation Tuesday called for more U.S. troops and more aggressive American military action in Afghanistan, as well as pressure on neighboring Pakistan, saying the United States needs “a winning strategy” to end the 16-year war here and prevent the spread of terrorism.
https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/as ... story.html

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Re: Afghanistan

#36

Post by RTH10260 »

Seeking help with Afghanistan, US holds up $255 million to Pakistan
AP|Updated: Sep 01, 2017, 07.55 AM IST

WASHINGTON: The United States will hold up $255 million in military assistance for Pakistan until it cracks down on extremist groups that threaten neighboring Afghanistan, officials said Thursday, in the first concrete step since President Donald Trump vowed to ramp up pressure on Pakistan.

In his new strategy for the 16-year Afghan war, Trump singled out Pakistan for harboring Taliban leaders and other militants that are battling American troops in Afghanistan. Trump's tough words about Pakistan, a troubled U.S. security partner, infuriated Islamabad and triggered anti-U.S. protests that Pakistani police have had to use tear gas to disperse.

Although the Trump administration had floated the possibility of curtailing aid, hitting Islamabad with sanctions or severing its status as a major non-NATO ally, it had been unclear until Thursday exactly what types of measures the administration would pursue, or how quickly.

"We have been paying Pakistan billions and billions of dollars at the same time they are housing the very terrorists that we are fighting,'' Trump said in his Afghanistan speech. "But that will have to change."
http://economictimes.indiatimes.com/new ... 317822.cms

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Re: Afghanistan

#37

Post by RTH10260 »

RTH10260 wrote:
Seeking help with Afghanistan, US holds up $255 million to Pakistan
:snippity:
http://economictimes.indiatimes.com/new ... 317822.cms
I don't think that Trump understands the implications of withholding funds. China is just waiting to jump in. President Xi Jinping may have forgotten to tell him that small detail during his history lesson at Mar-A-Lago.

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Re: Afghanistan

#38

Post by ZekeB »

RTH10260 wrote:I don't think that Trump understands the implications of withholding funds. China is just waiting to jump in. President Xi Jinping may have forgotten to tell him that small detail during his history lesson at Mar-A-Lago.
I doubt Trump could pass a fourth grade history test, let alone learn something new. I am not snarking.
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Re: Afghanistan

#39

Post by Notorial Dissent »

Sadly, I don't believe you are.
The fact that you sincerely and wholeheartedly believe that the “Law of Gravity” is unconstitutional and a violation of your sovereign rights, does not absolve you of adherence to it.

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Re: Afghanistan

#40

Post by kate520 »

Trump thinks all other presidents before him, mainly Obama but also all modern prezes, were morons and he's smart. That's his mantra, I think he believes it. By now, though, it should have sunk into even his double-walled, Neanderthal cranium that he is as wrong about that as he is about everything else.

Yeah, maybe not. He has no humility gene.

He projects more than any other public figure I can remember, so when he says they all weren't up to the job, he means himself.
DEFEND DEMOCRACY

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Re: Afghanistan

#41

Post by vic »

How to win friends and influence people:

I saw a story earlier about a Taliban suicide bomber whose attack was revenge for a propaganda leaflet. Here's why.

U.S. military apologizes for 'highly offensive' leaflets it distributed in Afghanistan
The U.S. military in Afghanistan apologized Wednesday for distributing leaflets featuring an image “highly offensive” to Muslims.

The leaflets dropped Tuesday night over parts of Parwan province showed the Shahada, the Muslim profession of faith, printed on the image of a dog, an animal viewed by many Muslims as unclean.
:snippity:

The image shows a lion chasing a white dog that is meant to represent the flag of Taliban insurgents, which is white with the Shahada printed at the center. The Times obtained a copy of the leaflet from an Afghan official in Parwan.
:snippity:
Local officials in Parwan complained Tuesday night to the provincial governor, prompting a phone call to U.S. military officials in Kabul and at Bagram air base in Parwan.

“It’s an insult to Islam,” said Waheeda Shakhar, spokeswoman for the Parwan governor. “It’s very sensitive that the Shahada is written on a dog, so it must be investigated.”
:snippity:

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Re: Afghanistan

#42

Post by Dolly »

I don't know anything about this kind of stuff. Not sure what to snip out either.
US quest for Afghan minerals risks burning everyone involved

High up on Donald Trump’s 2018 wishlist seems to be Afghanistan’s huge mineral wealth. But the president is walking into a minefield. Without serious action to reduce the massive risk of conflict and corruption, his push for new contracts is likely to do much more for the Taliban than America.

Afghanistan has massive mineral reserves, even if poor infrastructure makes them less valuable than the top-line numbers suggest. But those riches have done precious little to help the Afghan people, who have seen a fraction of the revenues that they should have — even as mining has been second only to narcotics in funding the Taliban.

Competition over mines among “pro-government” strongmen has turned parts of the country that staunchly resisted the Taliban — like Badakhshan province — into hotbeds of the insurgency. Locals angry at exploitation which does little to help them have backed the takeover of mines by illegal militias. Meanwhile, major concessions like the Aynak copper mines have seen allegations of large-scale bribery, and both US and Afghan officials say the Ministry of Mines lacks the capacity to manage new contracts.

Any new mining project in Afghanistan is at very grave risk of falling foul of one or more of these dangers. The main threat to the sector is not lack of investment, though that is certainly an issue: it is the lack of governance.

This is the environment in which America is pushing for new contracts. It is not clear exactly what is planned at this stage, and the desire to develop mining is not wrong in itself. But a few things are triggering alarm bells.

The first is the possibility that mines will be given cheaply to U.S. companies, as compensation for America’s commitment in Afghanistan. Erik Prince, founder of the deeply controversial Blackwater security company, has set out a vision of a “strategic mineral resource extraction funded effort” against the Taliban, according to a pitch obtained by BuzzFeedNews, echoing the colonial-era East India Company. For Afghans, whose ancestors fought against imperialism just as Americans did, that is a recipe for outrage.

Of course, Prince does not represent the U.S. government, even if he has close ties to it, and the Pentagon is reportedly opposed to Prince's suggestion. But Trump has secured agreement from the Afghan president that U.S. companies will “help … develop” Afghan resources. That implies something other than open allocation processes with the best bid winning. The fear is an Afghan version of the idea that America should have “kept the oil” in Iraq. That would appropriate resources from one of the world’s poorest countries to benefit a few American companies, not even America in general, given the U.S. would likely have to make up the resulting drop in Afghan revenue. <SNIP>
http://thehill.com/opinion/national-sec ... e-involved
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Re: Afghanistan

#43

Post by RTH10260 »

Dolly wrote:
Fri Jan 26, 2018 1:02 am
I don't know anything about this kind of stuff. Not sure what to snip out either.
US quest for Afghan minerals risks burning everyone involved

High up on Donald Trump’s 2018 wishlist seems to be Afghanistan’s huge mineral wealth. But the president is walking into a minefield. Without serious action to reduce the massive risk of conflict and corruption, his push for new contracts is likely to do much more for the Taliban than America.
:snippity: <SNIP>
http://thehill.com/opinion/national-sec ... e-involved
OMFSM - Is he having wet dreams? This has already been tried and failed when GWB&Co marched into Afghanistan to pick up Osama Bin Laden. Already then they thought of scavenging the country. They only backed off definitively after they rebuilt a new Afghan government and the Afghans would not have any of it. One of the original interests too was a pipeline from the northern ex Russian mini states thru Afghanistan down to Pakistani sea ports at the Indian Ocean. And when the US mentioned their mining interests the Japanese stepped in and offered competitive arrangments to the Afghans.

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Re: Afghanistan

#44

Post by Addie »

BBC News
Kabul attack: Taliban kill 95 with ambulance bomb in Afghan capital

A suicide bombing has killed at least 95 people and injured 158 others in the centre of Afghanistan's capital, Kabul, officials say.

Attackers drove an ambulance laden with explosives past a police checkpoint into a street that was only open to government workers.

It happened near the old interior ministry building and offices of the European Union and High Peace Council.

The Taliban have said they carried out the attack, the deadliest for months.
"The very least you can do in your life is to figure out what you hope for." - Barbara Kingsolver

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Re: Afghanistan

#45

Post by RTH10260 »

From all the press reports I see there is on average once a week some attack by the Taliban in Kabul. Though none as spectacular by casuality count like this one. With the US mostly out of sight the Taliban keep hammering the central government. The presumed heightend US military presence after DJTs promised to win the War On The Taliban does not seem to deter them.

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Re: Afghanistan

#46

Post by Addie »

WaPo
Protests erupt in Kabul over recent attacks, amid allegations of Pakistani involvement

KABUL — Afghan security officials, facing public wrath after a spate of urban terrorist attacks that left more than 130 people dead and hundreds injured, announced Thursday that they had presented Pakistani authorities with “undeniable evidence” that some of the insurgents were trained in Pakistan and that the attacks were planned there.

The interior minister and intelligence chief spoke at a hastily arranged news conference after returning from a brief visit to Islamabad, where they said they gave senior officials the names and locations of supporters of and facilities used by attackers, including mosques and seminaries.

They said some of the information had come from would-be suicide bombers who were captured in the course of bloody bombing and shooting attacks in Afghanistan that targeted a luxury hotel, a military academy, a British charity and a busy block near a hospital, where an ambulance filled with explosives was detonated.

As the officials spoke, several hundred protesters rallied at a nearby park and outside the Pakistani Embassy, demanding that the Kabul government do more to protect its citizens and that Pakistan stop fostering insurgents. But the capital remained tense and largely deserted, with heavily armed police and armored vehicles stationed on many streets.
"The very least you can do in your life is to figure out what you hope for." - Barbara Kingsolver

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Re: Afghanistan

#47

Post by RTH10260 »

How Much Of Afghanistan Is Controlled By Taliban


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Re: Afghanistan

#48

Post by Addie »

CNN
Taliban factions interested in reaching Afghan peace settlement, Mattis says

(CNN) Some factions of the Taliban have expressed interested in pursuing peace talks with the Afghan government, US Defense Secretary James Mattis said Tuesday.

Mattis told reporters before landing in Kabul on an unannounced visit that there was interest in reaching a settlement "that we've picked up from the Taliban side."

Expecting the entirety of the Taliban to support any move towards a ceasefire might be a "bridge too far," but "we've had some groups of Taliban -- small groups -- who have either started to come over or expressed an interest" in engaging in talks.

"It may not be that the whole Taliban comes over in one fell swoop ... but there are elements of the Taliban clearly interested in talking to the Afghan government," he said.

Mattis' visit is the first by a senior administration official since the Afghan government announced on February 28 it would be willing to recognize the Taliban as a legitimate political party as part of a potential ceasefire agreement with the Islamist militant group.
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Re: Afghanistan

#49

Post by Addie »

BBC News
Afghanistan: Kabul voter centre suicide attack kills dozens

A suicide attack at a voter registration centre in the Afghan capital Kabul has killed at least 31 people, officials say.

More than 50 others were injured in the blast which hit a crowd waiting at the entrance to the building.

The Islamic State group (IS) has claimed via its Amaq news agency that it carried out the attack.

Voter registration began this month for legislative elections which are due to take place in October.

The Amaq report said that a suicide bomber wearing an explosive belt targeted the centre, which is in the Dashte Barchi area of western Kabul. ...

Eyewitness Bashir Ahmad said many of the victims were women with children who were there to get their identity cards and register for the elections.

There have already been at least four attacks on such centres since voter registration got under way a week ago.
"The very least you can do in your life is to figure out what you hope for." - Barbara Kingsolver

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Re: Afghanistan

#50

Post by Addie »

The Guardian
Dozens dead in bombing at Kabul voter registration centre ...

The recent assaults underscore growing concerns about security in the run-up to legislative elections scheduled for 20 October, which are seen as a test run for next year’s presidential poll.

Over the next two months, authorities hope to register up to 14 million adults at more than 7,000 polling centres for the parliamentary and district council elections.

Officials have been pushing people to register amid fears a low turnout will undermine the credibility of the polls.

Last week, militants killed three police officers responsible for guarding voter registration centres in two Afghan provinces, according to authorities.
"The very least you can do in your life is to figure out what you hope for." - Barbara Kingsolver

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