Taliban attack kills 26 Afghan soldiers and wounds 13



At least 26 Afghan soldiers have been killed and 13 wounded in a Taliban attack on a military base in southern Kandahar province, the defence ministry said on Wednesday.

The militants "attacked an army camp in Karzali area of Khakrez district of Kandahar last night", ministry spokesman General Dawlat Waziri said.

Afghan soldiers "bravely resisted", he added, killing more than 80 insurgents.

Residents in the area described an hours-long attack launched by a 30 vehicle-strong convoy carrying "hundreds" of Taliban who assaulted the base from multiple directions.

Air support was called in, several residents said, though that was not immediately confirmed by officials.

The insurgents claimed the attack via their Twitter account. The resurgent Taliban have been ramping up their campaign against beleaguered government forces, underscoring rising insecurity in the war-torn country during the summer fighting season when the warmer weather tends to spur an increase in militant attacks.

Afghan security forces — beset by a high death toll, desertions and non-existent "ghost soldiers" on the payroll — have been struggling to beat back insurgents since US-led Nato troops ended their combat mission in December 2014.

Casualties among Afghan security forces soared by 35 per cent last year, with 6,800 soldiers and police killed, according to US watchdog Sigar.

The insurgents have carried out more complex attacks against security forces this year, with Sigar describing troop casualties in the early part of the year as "shockingly high".

In April, at least 135 soldiers are believed to have been killed on a base outside the northern city of Mazar-i-Sharif, one of the deadliest ever Taliban attacks on a military installation.

Some sources put the toll as high as 200. And in early March, gunmen disguised as doctors stormed the Sardar Daud Khan hospital, the country's largest military hospital, in Kabul, killing dozens.

The Taliban have a heavy presence in poppy-growing Kandahar province and have launched repeated attacks on security forces there, including multiple assaults on military bases in May which killed dozens of soldiers.

A recent UN report showed that Kandahar, which lies on the border with Pakistan, was also one of the most dangerous places in the country for civilians.

More than 70 villagers were kidnapped by the Taliban in recent days, officials said.

Seven were found dead and some 30 returned, while Afghan police have launched a search and rescue operation for the remainder of the missing.

Afghan forces now control 59.7 per cent of the country, up from 57.2 per cent the previous quarter, according to Sigar.

The Taliban and other insurgent groups, meanwhile, saw their areas of control or influence increase slightly from about 10 per cent to 11.1 per cent.

The five pillars of Islam

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Stars: Rachel Zegler, Peter Dinklage, Viola Davis, Tom Blyth

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Company profile

Company name: Fasset
Started: 2019
Founders: Mohammad Raafi Hossain, Daniel Ahmed
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Mairobr v Liverpool
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Zakat definitions

Zakat: an Arabic word meaning ‘to cleanse’ or ‘purification’.

Nisab: the minimum amount that a Muslim must have before being obliged to pay zakat. Traditionally, the nisab threshold was 87.48 grams of gold, or 612.36 grams of silver. The monetary value of the nisab therefore varies by current prices and currencies.

Zakat Al Mal: the ‘cleansing’ of wealth, as one of the five pillars of Islam; a spiritual duty for all Muslims meeting the ‘nisab’ wealth criteria in a lunar year, to pay 2.5 per cent of their wealth in alms to the deserving and needy.

Zakat Al Fitr: a donation to charity given during Ramadan, before Eid Al Fitr, in the form of food. Every adult Muslim who possesses food in excess of the needs of themselves and their family must pay two qadahs (an old measure just over 2 kilograms) of flour, wheat, barley or rice from each person in a household, as a minimum.

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Director: Spike Lee

Starring: John David Washington; Adam Driver 

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Empty Words

By Mario Levrero  

(Coffee House Press)
 

UNpaid bills:

Countries with largest unpaid bill for UN budget in 2019

USA – $1.055 billion

Brazil – $143 million

Argentina – $52 million

Mexico – $36 million

Iran – $27 million

Israel – $18 million

Venezuela – $17 million

Korea – $10 million

Countries with largest unpaid bill for UN peacekeeping operations in 2019

USA – $2.38 billion

Brazil – $287 million

Spain – $110 million

France – $103 million

Ukraine – $100 million

 

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2). Roberto Soldado - Valencia - £25m: Flop

3). Erik Lamela - Roma - £25m: Jury still out

4). Son Heung-min - Bayer Leverkusen - £25m: Success

5). Darren Bent - Charlton Athletic - £21m: Flop

6). Vincent Janssen - AZ Alkmaar - £18m: Flop

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10). Mousa Dembele - Fulham - £16m: Success

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Company Profile

Company name: Namara
Started: June 2022
Founder: Mohammed Alnamara
Based: Dubai
Sector: Microfinance
Current number of staff: 16
Investment stage: Series A
Investors: Family offices

Red Joan

Director: Trevor Nunn

Starring: Judi Dench, Sophie Cookson, Tereza Srbova

Rating: 3/5 stars

Where to donate in the UAE

The Emirates Charity Portal

You can donate to several registered charities through a “donation catalogue”. The use of the donation is quite specific, such as buying a fan for a poor family in Niger for Dh130.

The General Authority of Islamic Affairs & Endowments

The site has an e-donation service accepting debit card, credit card or e-Dirham, an electronic payment tool developed by the Ministry of Finance and First Abu Dhabi Bank.

Al Noor Special Needs Centre

You can donate online or order Smiles n’ Stuff products handcrafted by Al Noor students. The centre publishes a wish list of extras needed, starting at Dh500.

Beit Al Khair Society

Beit Al Khair Society has the motto “From – and to – the UAE,” with donations going towards the neediest in the country. Its website has a list of physical donation sites, but people can also contribute money by SMS, bank transfer and through the hotline 800-22554.

Dar Al Ber Society

Dar Al Ber Society, which has charity projects in 39 countries, accept cash payments, money transfers or SMS donations. Its donation hotline is 800-79.

Dubai Cares

Dubai Cares provides several options for individuals and companies to donate, including online, through banks, at retail outlets, via phone and by purchasing Dubai Cares branded merchandise. It is currently running a campaign called Bookings 2030, which allows people to help change the future of six underprivileged children and young people.

Emirates Airline Foundation

Those who travel on Emirates have undoubtedly seen the little donation envelopes in the seat pockets. But the foundation also accepts donations online and in the form of Skywards Miles. Donated miles are used to sponsor travel for doctors, surgeons, engineers and other professionals volunteering on humanitarian missions around the world.

Emirates Red Crescent

On the Emirates Red Crescent website you can choose between 35 different purposes for your donation, such as providing food for fasters, supporting debtors and contributing to a refugee women fund. It also has a list of bank accounts for each donation type.

Gulf for Good

Gulf for Good raises funds for partner charity projects through challenges, like climbing Kilimanjaro and cycling through Thailand. This year’s projects are in partnership with Street Child Nepal, Larchfield Kids, the Foundation for African Empowerment and SOS Children's Villages. Since 2001, the organisation has raised more than $3.5 million (Dh12.8m) in support of over 50 children’s charities.

Noor Dubai Foundation

Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum launched the Noor Dubai Foundation a decade ago with the aim of eliminating all forms of preventable blindness globally. You can donate Dh50 to support mobile eye camps by texting the word “Noor” to 4565 (Etisalat) or 4849 (du).

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Company: Growdash
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Co-founders: Arto Bendiken and Talal Thabet
Based: Dubai, UAE
Industry: AI
Number of employees: 41
Funding: About $1.7 million
Investors: Self, family and friends

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Inter Milan 1 (Martinez 18' pen)

Juventus 2 (Dybala 4', Higuain 80')

Key features of new policy

Pupils to learn coding and other vocational skills from Grade 6

Exams to test critical thinking and application of knowledge

A new National Assessment Centre, PARAKH (Performance, Assessment, Review and Analysis for Holistic Development) will form the standard for schools

Schools to implement online system to encouraging transparency and accountability

The 12 breakaway clubs

England

Arsenal, Chelsea, Liverpool, Manchester City, Manchester United, Tottenham Hotspur

Italy
AC Milan, Inter Milan, Juventus

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Company Profile

Name: HyveGeo
Started: 2023
Founders: Abdulaziz bin Redha, Dr Samsurin Welch, Eva Morales and Dr Harjit Singh
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Number of employees: 8
Industry: Sustainability & Environment
Funding: $200,000 plus undisclosed grant
Investors: Venture capital and government

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Max power: 800hp
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Battery: 25.7kWh lithium-ion
0-100km/h: 3.4sec
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Max electric-only range: 60km (claimed)
On sale: Q3
Price: From Dh1.2m (estimate)

ETFs explained

Exhchange traded funds are bought and sold like shares, but operate as index-tracking funds, passively following their chosen indices, such as the S&P 500, FTSE 100 and the FTSE All World, plus a vast range of smaller exchanges and commodities, such as gold, silver, copper sugar, coffee and oil.

ETFs have zero upfront fees and annual charges as low as 0.07 per cent a year, which means you get to keep more of your returns, as actively managed funds can charge as much as 1.5 per cent a year.

There are thousands to choose from, with the five biggest providers BlackRock’s iShares range, Vanguard, State Street Global Advisors SPDR ETFs, Deutsche Bank AWM X-trackers and Invesco PowerShares.

World Cup final

Who: France v Croatia
When: Sunday, July 15, 7pm (UAE)
TV: Game will be shown live on BeIN Sports for viewers in the Mena region

SPECS

Engine: 1.5-litre 4-cylinder
Power: 101hp
Torque: 135Nm
Transmission: Six-speed auto
Price: From Dh79,900
On sale: Now

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Name: Hassan Mohsen Elhais

Position: legal consultant with Al Rowaad Advocates and Legal Consultants.

UAE tour of the Netherlands

UAE squad: Rohan Mustafa (captain), Shaiman Anwar, Ghulam Shabber, Mohammed Qasim, Rameez Shahzad, Mohammed Usman, Adnan Mufti, Chirag Suri, Ahmed Raza, Imran Haider, Mohammed Naveed, Amjad Javed, Zahoor Khan, Qadeer Ahmed
Fixtures:
Monday, 1st 50-over match
Wednesday, 2nd 50-over match
Thursday, 3rd 50-over match

Asian Cup 2019

Quarter-final

UAE v Australia, Friday, 8pm, Hazza bin Zayed Stadium, Al Ain

COMPANY PROFILE

Name: Floward
Based: Riyadh, Saudi Arabia
Founders: Abdulaziz Al Loughani and Mohamed Al Arifi
Sector: E-commerce
Total funding: About $200 million
Investors: Aljazira Capital, Rainwater Partners, STV and Impact46
Number of employees: 1,200

AS WE EXIST

Author: Kaoutar Harchi 

Publisher: Other Press

Pages: 176

Available: Now

Juventus v Napoli, Sunday, 10.45pm (UAE)

Match on Bein Sports

A Long Way Home by Peter Carey
Faber & Faber

TOURNAMENT INFO

Women’s World Twenty20 Qualifier

Jul 3- 14, in the Netherlands
The top two teams will qualify to play at the World T20 in the West Indies in November

UAE squad
Humaira Tasneem (captain), Chamani Seneviratne, Subha Srinivasan, Neha Sharma, Kavisha Kumari, Judit Cleetus, Chaya Mughal, Roopa Nagraj, Heena Hotchandani, Namita D’Souza, Ishani Senevirathne, Esha Oza, Nisha Ali, Udeni Kuruppuarachchi

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High fever (40°C/104°F)
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SPECS

Engine: 4.0-litre twin-turbo V8
Power: 750hp at 7,500rpm
Torque: 800Nm at 5,500rpm
Transmission: 7 Speed dual-clutch auto
Top speed: 332kph
Fuel consumption: 12.2L/100km
On sale: Year end
Price: From Dh1,430,000 (coupe); From Dh1,566,000 (Spider)

The specs: 2018 Renault Koleos

Price, base: From Dh77,900
Engine: 2.5L, in-line four-cylinder
Transmission: Continuously variable transmission
Power: 170hp @ 6,000rpm
Torque: 233Nm @ 4,000rpm
Fuel economy, combined: 8.3L / 100km

How will Gen Alpha invest?

Mark Chahwan, co-founder and chief executive of robo-advisory firm Sarwa, forecasts that Generation Alpha (born between 2010 and 2024) will start investing in their teenage years and therefore benefit from compound interest.

“Technology and education should be the main drivers to make this happen, whether it’s investing in a few clicks or their schools/parents stepping up their personal finance education skills,” he adds.

Mr Chahwan says younger generations have a higher capacity to take on risk, but for some their appetite can be more cautious because they are investing for the first time. “Schools still do not teach personal finance and stock market investing, so a lot of the learning journey can feel daunting and intimidating,” he says.

He advises millennials to not always start with an aggressive portfolio even if they can afford to take risks. “We always advise to work your way up to your risk capacity, that way you experience volatility and get used to it. Given the higher risk capacity for the younger generations, stocks are a favourite,” says Mr Chahwan.

Highlighting the role technology has played in encouraging millennials and Gen Z to invest, he says: “They were often excluded, but with lower account minimums ... a customer with $1,000 [Dh3,672] in their account has their money working for them just as hard as the portfolio of a high get-worth individual.”