WORLDPOST
08/26/2010 06:31 pm ET | Updated May 25, 2011

U.S. Official: Pakistan Taliban Plan To Attack Flood Aid Workers

Today's AfPak round-up:

U.S. official: Pakistan Taliban plan to attack flood aid workers. There have been no such attacks so far, but the World Health Organization says it has already scaled back due to security concerns. Retired Pakistani general Talat Masood says the terror group has a strong incentive to disrupt relief efforts: "[Pakistanis] generally had anti-US and anti-West feeling in the past for various reasons, and now with this sort of assistance, it's very likely that the people might change their attitude." [BBC]

Afghanistan, India pledge to fight terror together. After a two-day summit in New Delhi, the two countries called on their neighbors to deny "safe havens and sanctuaries" to terrorists. While the statement did not mention Pakistan directly, both countries have in the past accused Islamabad of harboring terrorists. Pakistan and India have jostled for influence in Afghanistan, and this summit indicates that Afghan President Hamid Karzai is leaning further away from Pakistan and toward India. [AFP]

Oil drilling begins in northern Afghanistan. Afghanistan's Mines Ministry plans to open biding for contracts to refine the oil soon, though the new drilling facility in the country's Sar-i-Pul province will only extract 800 barrels a day. It is unclear who is funding the facility—an Afghan government spokesman said only that they were aided by "a foreign institution," and U.S. officials say they do not know who was involved with the project. [Reuters]

Young candidates aim to change face of Afghan parliament. A cadre of progressive, young Afghans, some of whom boast Western educations, and many of whom are celebrities who became famous after the fall of the Taliban, are running for seats in their country's September 18 parliamentary elections to fight corruption and patronage. These candidates could enjoy a wide base of support—according to the UNDP, 68% of Afghans are age 25 or under. [DAWN]