In the latest developments of the violent civil war in Afghanistan, the Taliban has reportedly cut a weapon supply line key to the opposition, killing at least 25 of their militiamen.
This comes as a significant blow to the opposition, which this week lost two of the four provinces they controlled. Abdullah, a leader of the opposition, commented that "Our fighters have repulsed the attack at Saland, but fighting is still going on at several other fronts."
In response, James Rubin, U.S. State Department spokesman, stated, "We are deeply distressed that after agreeing to a peaceful solution...the result was the Taliban went straight to the battlefield and has taken additional military steps. They are deluding themselves if they think they can win this conflict on the battlefield. The only way to resolve the situation in Afghanistan is for there to be an all-party, all-faction reconciliation. That is the way to peace in Afghanistan."
In addition, Iran - which has had strained relations with the Taliban since the murders of an Iranian journalist and several Iranian diplomats last year - has called upon the United Nations to use their influence to stop the civil war. Foreign Minister Kamal Kharazi stressed the need for "a political solution rather than military actions," and pressured UN Secretary General Kofi Annan to "use his influence to put an end to the mass killings and interference by foreign forces in Afghanistan."
Media Resources: ando Times and AP - August 3, 1999 and Agence France Presse - August 4, 1999
10/30/2014 Medication Abortion Access Threatened by Oklahoma Court Ruling - An Oklahoma state district court judge has refused to block a state law restricting medication abortion, clearing the way for the law to go into affect on November 1.
The Oklahoma Coalition for Reproductive Justice, together with a local abortion clinic in Tulsa, challenged HB 2684 in September, arguing that the law was an unconstitutional restriction on non-surgical abortion in the earliest weeks of pregnancy. . . .
10/30/2014 UPS Switches Pregnant Worker Policy Ahead of Supreme Court Case - The United Parcel Service (UPS) is changing its policy on light duty assignments for pregnant workers, even though the company will stand by its refusal to extend accommodations to a former employee in an upcoming Supreme Court case.
UPS announced on Monday in a memo to employees, and in a brief filed with the US Supreme Court, that the company will begin offering temporary, light-duty positions to pregnant workers on January 1, 2015. . . .
10/30/2014 North Dakota Medical Students Speak Out Against Measure 1 - Medical students at the University of North Dakota School of Medicine and Health Sciences are asking North Dakotans to vote no on Measure 1, a personhood measure on the state ballot this fall.
The students issued published a letter in the Grand Forks Herald stating that they opposed Measure 1 in part because they are against "the government's taking control of the personal health care decisions of its citizens." Nearly 60 UND School of Medicine students signed the letter, citing concerns over the "very broad and ambiguous language" used in the proposed amendment, which has no regard for serious and life-threatening medical situations such as ectopic pregnancies.
Measure 1 would change the North Dakota state constitution to create an "inalienable right to life" for humans "at any stage of development" - including the moment of fertilization and conception. . . .