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World Digest: Pakistani court blocks extradition of captured Taliban leaders

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Saturday, February 27, 2010

PAKISTAN

High court blocks Taliban extraditions

The Lahore High Court barred the government Friday from sending captured Afghan Taliban leaders abroad, a day after Afghan officials said Pakistan had agreed to hand over the group's No. 2 commander.

Pakistan, a U.S. ally, has captured at least four senior Taliban members in recent weeks, including top military strategist Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar.

Afghan President Hamid Karzai's office said Thursday that Pakistan had agreed to hand Baradar over. Pakistani officials said Wednesday that Baradar was being investigated for crimes in Pakistan and would be tried there first.

Islamist rights activist Khalid Khawaja had lodged a petition with the Lahore court expressing concern that Baradar and other captured Taliban leaders would be extradited to the United States.

-- Reuters

COLOMBIA

Court ends hopes for Uribe reelection

Colombia's constitutional court rejected on Friday a referendum to allow President Álvaro Uribe's reelection in a ruling that effectively ends his chance of seeking a third consecutive term in May.

The decision marks the start of a tough campaign among rivals seeking to replace Uribe, who had become one of the country's most popular presidents for his U.S.-backed campaign against leftist guerrillas.

Under Uribe, Latin America's oldest insurgency has ebbed and foreign investment has flowed steadily into Colombia. Many Colombians praised Uribe as the man who steered the country onto the right track.


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