WASHINGTON (AP) — Relatives and supporters of an American contractor who was abducted a year ago in Afghanistan and is believed to be in the custody of a Taliban-linked militant group are pressing the new Biden administration to bring him home. They also want to condition future peace talks or troop withdrawals on his release from captivity. Navy veteran Mark Frerichs vanished on Jan. 31, 2020. U.S. officials believe he is in the custody of the Haqqani network. The Taliban have not publicly acknowledged holding him. It’s unclear to what extent, if at all, Frerichs’ fate will be complicated by the declining American military presence in Afghanistan committed to by the Trump administration.
Chinese President Xi Jinping (2nd R), visiting Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni (2nd L) and their wives pose for a photo during a welcoming ceremony in Beijing, capital of China, March 31, 2015. (Xinhua/Huang Jingwen)Chinese President Xi Jinping has held talks Ugandan President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni in Beijing.The two leaders highly praised the two nations’ cooperation, and agreed to seek opportunity and broaden cooperation in future.President Xi said the nations should strengthen cooperation based on mutual benefits and be a model for international relations.Premier Li keqiang also met with Meseveni.Premier Li said China’s advantage in infrastructure building can meet the demand of Uganda.China is willing to share experience with Uganda and boost the construction of airport, railways and other infrastructure projects.Agreements signed between Uganda’s President Yoweri Museveni and his Chinese Counterpart Xi Jinping have been welcomed by many Ugandans.Locals believe cooperation in the area of infrastructure, mining and tourism will boost the development of the East African nation.Here’s a sample of their views: DEBORAH KARUNGI – Global logistics”There will be development of infrastructure because I believe roads will be constructed and transport will be easy may be people from the rural areas will also benefit”SANDRA ASHABA – Global logistics”There will be reduction in power shortages and more development in industries.”SHABAN OPENDI – Security guard”When Karuma Dam has been developed I know we are going to get electricity, Ugandans are going to get employment and we are going to add value in technology.”SHEEBA NYAKATO – Clearing and forwarding agent”The dam will help us to have power at all costs the hospitals will have power and the Industries.The knowledge I have with clearing and forwarding it will also help us to transport our goods….and may be they will employ more people ton work at the dam”Sound Bite: JAMES MUGABO —businessman.”If they come and set up Industries in Uganda we get benefits in terms of labor….and when these people are making profits they have to pay revenue in our country so those are benefits.”
CLEARING THE BAR—Will Graham of Allderdice cleared the High Jump bar at 6’ 5” to win the event. Graham also won the Triple Jump. The annual Luncheon will take place at the Greater Pittsburgh Coliseum, located at 7310 Frankstown Ave. in the Homewood section of the city. More than 100 boys and girls athletes will be honored for football and basketball, in addition to the new Track and Field category.Perry seniors Greg McGhee and Ray Taylor will be honored as the Offensive and Defensive MVPs of City League football. Bill Gallagher garnered Coach of the Year honors for the 2011 champion Commodores.Allderdice swept the boys and girls titles in basketball; thus, they took the Most Valuable Player awards, as well. Junior guard Justin Dobbs topped the boys’ list and Senior Janay Bottoms will represent the girls.Carrick’s Walt Malinski ousted the coaches of the top two programs in the City League as the top vote getter for the boys basketball Coach of the Year honors. As for the girls, there is an even split for top honors, as Westinghouse’s Phyllis Jones and Allderdice’s Dave Walchesky were named Co-Coaches of the Year.This year’s keynote speaker will be former Pitt Basketball star Jason Matthews. He distinguished himself on the court from 1987-91 as the all-time leading three-point scorer (259) and led the Panthers in three-point percentage (.457). He is now an entrepreneur in several ventures around Pittsburgh.Charles Sanders Charities is the Platinum (Presenting) Sponsor for this year’s event. Other sponsors include H. J. Heinz Co., Trolley Station Oral History Center and Jim Rice Enterprises (McDonald’s).Tickets for the event are priced at $25 for the guests and family members of the athletes. To make reservations, contact 412-481-8302 ext. 136. by Malik VincentThe New Pittsburgh Courier has added something new this year to it’s 2011 All-City Awards Luncheon. The June 4 event will now include and honor all of the winners of the City League Track and Field championships that were held on May 14.Schenley swept the boys and girls overall titles this year led by Elizabeth Rose, Kaleah Rose, and DeAndre Black who combined to win eight events for the Spartans.