Tag: Diplomatic Service, Embassies and Consulates

Vatican Envoy to France Under Investigation for Sexual Assault

PARIS — The Vatican’s envoy to France is being investigated after a male employee of Paris City Hall accused him of sexual assault, according to French officials and news reports on Friday. The case adds to a long list of sexual assault accusations around the globe — from minors, other priests and nuns, among others […]

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Afghan Forces Arrest Man Accused in 2017 Attack That Killed 150

KABUL, Afghanistan — The intelligence agency said Saturday that Afghan special forces had arrested a Taliban operative responsible for two major attacks in Kabul. And in a separate operation, agents apprehended a university professor who they described as a top recruiter for the Islamic State. In a statement, the Afghan National Directorate of Security said […]

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Thank God for Canada!

After the Canadian foreign minister, Chrystia Freeland, tweeted concern about Saudi Arabia’s imprisoning of a women’s rights activist, the crown prince there seemed to go nuts. Saudi Arabia announced that it was expelling Canada’s ambassador, halting flights to Canada, ending purchases of Canadian wheat, recalling students from Canada and selling off Canadian assets. Did the […]

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Canada Slashes Diplomatic Staff in Cuba After Another Mystery Illness

The Canadian government said on Wednesday that it would withdraw up to half of its diplomatic staff in Havana, as it disclosed that another employee had fallen ill with the mysterious symptoms that have affected dozens of Americans and Canadians stationed in Cuba. Since early 2017, American and Canadian government employees in Cuba have suffered […]

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White House Memo: Why Did Soviets Invade Afghanistan? Documents Offer History Lesson for Trump

WASHINGTON — One day in October 1979, an American diplomat named Archer K. Blood arrived at Afghanistan’s government headquarters, summoned by the new president, whose ousted predecessor had just been smothered to death with a pillow. While the Kabul government was a client of the Soviet Union, the new president, Hafizullah Amin, had something else […]

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News Analysis: Afghans Fear They Could End Up Trampled if U.S. Rushes the Exits

KABUL, Afghanistan — A giant H has been painted on the broad boulevard in front of the American Embassy in Kabul, creating a new helipad that so far, embassy officials say, has only been used by Zalmay Khalilzad, the special United States diplomat who has been talking with the Taliban. President Ashraf Ghani of Afghanistan […]

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Can This Man Help End the War in Afghanistan?

LAHORE, Pakistan — On Thursday, the Taliban appointed Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar, who founded the movement with Mullah Mohammad Omar in 1993, as the chief negotiator in the peace talks with the United States, being held in Qatar. Mr. Baradar, who was also appointed as deputy to the Taliban chief Mawlawi Haibatullah Akhundzada, is expected […]

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Canada’s Ambassador to China Pushed Out Over Controversy

MONTREAL — Canada’s ambassador to China has resigned following a series of diplomatic missteps that further complicated already strained relations between the two countries. The resignation came days after the ambassador, John McCallum, stunned seasoned diplomatic observers by saying that Meng Wanzhou, the chief financial officer of the Chinese telecom firm Huawei who was arrested […]

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Venezuelan President Does an About-Face That Allows U.S. Diplomats to Stay

CARACAS, Venezuela — President Nicolás Maduro of Venezuela on Saturday backed down from demanding that all American diplomats leave the country this weekend, even as the United States and allied nations continued to press for regime change in the South American nation. Foreign Minister Jorge Arreaza said that Mr. Maduro’s government and the United States […]

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U.S. and Taliban Make Headway in Talks for Withdrawal From Afghanistan

KABUL, Afghanistan — American and Taliban negotiators are making headway on a deal in which the United States would withdraw troops from Afghanistan in return for a pledge by the Taliban not to allow the country to host terrorist groups like Al Qaeda, senior Taliban officials and Western diplomats said Thursday. The possibility of an […]

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Scholars and Ex-Diplomats Warn of Chill After Canadians Detained in China

BEIJING — Warning that China’s arrest of two Canadians has created a dangerous chill for people working on policy and research in that country, more than 100 academics and former diplomats have signed an open letter calling for the two men to be immediately freed. Made public on Monday, the letter was an international cry […]

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‘We Came to Take You to Riyadh’: Khashoggi Killing Detailed in New Book

ISTANBUL — A new book written by three Turkish reporters and drawing on audio recordings of the killing of a Saudi expatriate, Jamal Khashoggi, offers new details about an encounter that began with a demand that he return home and ended in murder and dismemberment. “First we will tell him ‘We are taking you to […]

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U.S. Ambassadors Worldwide Are Summoned to D.C. Forum Despite Shutdown

WASHINGTON — The State Department plans to fly all of its ambassadors and other top diplomatic envoys from around the world into Washington next week for a two-day conference, even if the continuing partial government shutdown continues. Most State Department employees have been furloughed or are working without pay since the shutdown began on Dec. […]

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Two Speeches, a Decade Apart: How Pompeo Departed From Obama

The speech on Thursday by Secretary of State Mike Pompeo at the American University in Cairo, laying out the Trump administration’s Middle East objectives, was strikingly at odds with a famed speech made by President Barack Obama in the same city nearly a decade ago. Mr. Pompeo blamed the prior White House administration for “fundamental […]

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North Korea’s Envoy to Italy Disappears, Raising Suspicions of a Defection

TOKYO — North Korea’s acting ambassador to Italy disappeared from the embassy in Rome in November, apparently in a defection attempt, according to a South Korean lawmaker briefed by intelligence officials. The potentially embarrassing news for Kim Jong-un, North Korea’s leader, came just two days after he extolled his country’s economic and diplomatic progress and […]

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China Thwarts U.S. Effort to Promote American Culture on Campuses

BEIJING — The American ambassador to China, Terry Branstad, wanted to make what in most nations would have been a routine trip. One of his favorite schools, Iowa State University, had opened a center to promote American culture in an inland Chinese province, and the laid-back former governor of Iowa was eager to take questions […]

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Hello. Does Poland Have Vampires? My Date Wants to Know My Blood Type.

ImageOne man requested that the British Foreign Office speak to a massage parlor in Bangkok on his behalf: He had fallen asleep during a massage and felt he should not have to pay for it.CreditAndres Martinez Casares/Reuters LONDON — The British Foreign Office is used to tackling matters of import on a global scale. This […]

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Canada Presses China on ‘Arbitrary’ Detention of Citizens

TORONTO — Canada tried to turn up pressure on China on Saturday over the detention of two Canadians caught up in a struggle between global superpowers, with its foreign minister calling their imprisonment “arbitrary” and “a precedent that is worrying not only for Canada but for the world.” China seized the two Canadians, the former […]

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Brett McGurk, Top U.S. Diplomat Leading Fight Against Islamic State, Resigns

Brett McGurk, the special presidential envoy to the coalition fighting the Islamic State, has accelerated his resignation, telling colleagues this weekend that he could not carry out President Trump’s newly declared policy of withdrawing from Syria. A seasoned diplomat considered by many to be the glue holding together the sprawling, American-led coalition fighting the terrorist […]

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United Nations Dispatch: Runners Extend U.N.’s Reach, One Sweaty Huff After Another

UNITED NATIONS — They meet in the predawn darkness outside Central Park, less than two miles from the United Nations, where many of them often encounter one another, exchanging knowing glances or a runner-to-runner handshake. Chugging through the dimly lit park on a 30-minute jog, they pass dog walkers, other runners and the occasional homeless […]

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