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Former France President, Nicolas Sarkozy Sentenced To 3 Years In Prison For Corruption

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French former president, Nicolas Sarkozy was sentenced Monday in Paris to three years’ imprisonment, alongside a firm for corruption and influence-peddling in the so-called “eavesdropping” case, born in 2014 of telephone interceptions with its historical lawyer Thierry Herzog.

Nicolas Sarkozy thus becomes the second former president convicted under the Fifth Republic, after Jacques Chirac in 2011 in the case of fictitious jobs in the city of Paris.

The criminal court considered that a “corruption pact” had been concluded between the former president, now 66 years old, his lawyer Me Thierry Herzog and the former high magistrate Gilbert Azibert, also sentenced to three years of prison, one of which is closed.

On December 8, the National Financial Prosecutor’s Office (PNF) had demanded against Nicolas Sarkozy four years’ imprisonment, two of which were firm, believing that the presidential image had been “damaged” by this affair with “devastating effects”.

Mr. Sarkozy was accused of having attempted to obtain in 2014, through Mr. Herzog, secret information from Gilbert Azibert, then a senior magistrate, in a procedure concerning the seizure of his diaries on the sidelines of the case Bettencourt.

Information that had to be delivered by the magistrate in exchange for a boost for a prestigious position in Monaco.

Before the court, his lawyers had argued that in the end, Nicolas Sarkozy had not been successful before the Court of Cassation and that Gilbert Azibert had never had a post in Monaco.

According to the law, however, it is not necessary that the consideration has been obtained, nor that the influence is real, to characterize the offences of corruption and influence peddling.

This decision of the court will become final if it is not appealed against.

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Taliban ‘Behead Female Volleyball Player, Shares Graphic Images Across Social Media’

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Taliban officials have beheaded a young woman and uploaded the graphics images on social media.

According to reports, a highly-rated player named, Mahjabin with the Kabul Municipality Volleyball Club, was slaughtered by jihadists.

The Persian Independent in an interview accused the fundamentalists of sharing images of her corpse online.

The Taliban who does not permit women to play sport under their rule had killed the girl earlier this month.

Her death was only now being reported because the coach claims the family were subjected to threats from Islamist militants if they spoke out.

Coach Suraya Afzali says she was captured having failed to escape Afghanistan after the collapse of the previous government.

But conflicting reports on social media said she was mysteriously killed a week before the Taliban returned to power.

“All the players of the volleyball team and the rest of the women athletes are in a bad situation and they are in despair and live in fear,” he said in the interview.

“Everyone has been forced to flee and live in unknown places.”

The new all-male Taliban government was formed earlier this year, with women excluded.

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First Black US Secretary Of State Collin Powell Is Dead

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The first Black US Secretary of State, Collin Powell, has died from complications from Covid-19 (coronavirus) at the age of 84.

Naija News reports that this was made known by his family in a post on Facebook on Monday.

General Colin L. Powell, former U.S. Secretary of State and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, passed away this morning due to complications from Covid 19,” the Powell family wrote on Facebook.

We have lost a remarkable and loving husband, father, grandfather and a great American,” they said, noting he was fully vaccinated.

Powell’s leadership in several Republican administrations helped shape American foreign policy in the last years of the 20th century and the early years of the 21st.

The former Secretary of State was a distinguished and trailblazing professional soldier whose career took him from combat duty in Vietnam to becoming the first Black national security adviser during the end of Ronald Reagan’s presidency and the youngest and first African American chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff under President George H.W. Bush, CNN reports.

Collin Powell national popularity soared in the aftermath of the US-led coalition victory during the Gulf War, and for a time in the mid-90s, he was considered a leading contender to become the first Black President of the United States. But his reputation would be forever stained when, as George W. Bush’s first secretary of state, he pushed faulty intelligence before the United Nations to advocate for the Iraq War, which he would later call a “blot” on his record

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Afghanistan: Taliban Grants Dialogue With WHO, UNICEF

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Afghanistan

The Afghanistan Taliban government on Monday, October 18, granted a dialogue with the World Health Organization (WHO) and United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF).

The development was made known in a joint publication made available to newsmen after the chat, Naija News reports.

The UN agencies revealed that the Deobandi Islamic fundamentalist political movement and military organization has agreed to allow the resumption of the door-to-door vaccination of children against polio.

The campaign, according to the Monday report will begin on November 8, the first time in over three years. The exercise is expected to reach 3.3 million children hitherto inaccessible due to violence.

Reacting to the Taliban’s decision, a WHO representative in Afghanistan, Dapeng Luo said it is “an extremely important step in the right direction”.

The government agreed on the inclusion of female frontline workers and the provision of security for all health workers, the statement added.

In another news earlier, a bomb blast reportedly killed at least 16 Muslim worshippers in the city of Kandahar, Afghanistan.

Naija News reports that the attack is coming exactly a week after a horrific bomb explosion killed about 50 worshippers at a Shiite mosque in the Afghan city of Kunduz.

No fewer than 32 persons were reportedly injured in the recent explosion which hit a Shia mosque in Kandahar today during a Friday prayer. “Sixteen dead bodies and 32 wounded were taken to the Mirwais Hospital,” a hospital spokesman told newsmen.

Confirming the recent attack which no group or any individual has yet claimed responsibility for, a spokesman for the southern city’s central hospital said the casualties are likely to rise due to the intensity of the explosion.

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