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Listen to the Webcast Britain in hot water over alleged Taliban meetings again and tick the correct answer.




1 Tensions between the Afghan Government and the international community are over A the expulsion of two high-ranking foreign officials B the misconduct of two high-ranking foreign officials C the mistreatment of two high-ranking officials 2 The expelled officials are experts from A the United Nations B the United Nations and the European Union C the European Union
3 Britain may also find itself in direct conflict with the Afghan Government over Aallegations that some of its officials have held meetings with the Taliban. B delegations that some of its officials send to the Taliban. Callegations that some of its officials rendered financial help to the Taliban. 4 The officials in question were officially declared persona non grata A for interference into home policy B for the Kabul administration of threat to national security C for threatening national security
5. Both of them have lived in Afghanistan A for more than 10 years, through the Civil War period B through the Civil War, the Taliban period and the recent government. C through the Civil War and the Taliban period 6. They were able to travel freely in these very dangerous insurgency areas, largely because A they had a reliable interpreter B they were two of the only people who used to have good relationship with the government C they were who were not afraid of travelling all over Afghanistan
7. The reason they are expelled is A they might reveal that there's no support for the Taliban in the south of the country B they might be canvassing against the Afghan Government C they know the real situation in the country which the government doesn’t want to acknowledge. 8. A British newspaper revealed that members of MI6 held meetings A with senior EU members in Afghanistan B with senior Taliban members in Afghanistan C with serious Taliban members
9. That could prove embarrassing for Gordon Brown because A he recently refuted allegations of having any talks with the Taliban B he recently approved all talks with the Taliban C he recently declined the offer to negotiate with the Taliban 10. In his statement Gordon Brown says that Great Britain was trying A to isolate and to eliminate the leadership of the Taliban B to negotiate with the leadership of Taliban C to isolate religious extremists by conducting talks with the leadership of the Taliban
11. Analysts on the ground believe that it makes sense to talk with A religious extremists to persuade them to support the Government B the tribal chiefs to persuade them to support the Government C the religious extremists or the tribal chiefs to persuade them to support the Government 12. The former EU mediator tries to engage in dialogue A with both British and EU negotiating groups B with both peaceful and armed Islamist groups C with both Afghani and EU Islamist groups
13. The former EU mediator believes that there are factions within the Taliban A which seek some sort of power sharing arrangement B which participate in the governance of Afghanistan C which found a way of getting back for the expelled officials 14. He has an opinion that both local government and the European are A to bring a more inclusive government B to stabilise the government of the day C to bring a more decisive government

B - Comprehension Test 2

Listen to the Webcast Britain in hot water over alleged Taliban meetings, answer the questions and to fill in the gaps.

Part 1.

1) What are the reasons for tensions rising between the Afghan Government and the international community?

2) What were the two official accused of?

3) What country is now under a threat to find itself in direct conflict with the Afghan?


Part 2.


In London, Stephanie Kennedy reports.

STEPHANIE KENNEDY: The _____________of the European Union's mission in Afghanistan, Michael Semple, and ___________________Mervyn Patterson, were declared persona non grata by the Kabul administration for "threatening national security".

The pair has been accused of holding talks with the Taliban in Helmand Province in the south.

Rory Stewart is______________, and he now runs a charity aimed at_____________parts of Afghanistan.

RORY STEWART: These are two of ________________international experts in Afghanistan. Both of them have lived in Afghanistan for more than 10 years, through the Civil War period, through the Taliban period, and now through the ________________government. They speak local languages fluently and they're two of the only people who are able to ______________________in these very dangerous insurgency areas, largely because of their good relationship, ____________________over 10 years.

It's a very serious loss to the international community.

 

Part 3.

 

STEPHANIE KENNEDY: And he says the Afghan Government's decision______________them is a worrying sign.

RORY STEWART: I think it's very disturbing. This is the kind of action ______________normally____________the Soviet Union, not with a country which is financed almost entirely by America and Europe and is supposed to be a liberal democratic state.

And it ______________the question, of course, of what exactly the Afghan Government is trying to hide, because they've_______________________________________two peoplewho are probably some of the people who know more about Afghanistan than anyone else, and is the reason they're expelling them that they're worried that these people might reveal that there's more support for the Taliban in the south than the Afghan Government is prepared_______________________.

STEPHANIE KENNEDY: ______________________as a British newspaper__________________ that members of Britain's secret intelligence service,________, held meetings earlier this year with senior Taliban members in Afghanistan.

That could________________________ _____________________ for the British Prime Minister, Gordon Brown, after he recently denied there were any talks with the Taliban.

 

Part 4

 

GORDON BROWN:Let me make it clear ___________________________that as part of ____________________ we are winning the battle against the Taliban insurgency, we are ___________ and _______________________ the leadership of the Taliban, we are not negotiating with them.

STEPHANIE KENNEDY: ________________________in Afghanistan say that talking to the insurgents does go on, it just depends on how you define the Taliban - are they just the ____________________ or the ____ _______________________________________that back them who _____________________________to support the Government?

Alastair Crooke is a former EU________________. He now tries to ________________dialogue with both peaceful and armed Islamist groups. He explains the difficulties of talking to those fighting the Afghan Government and Western forces.

 

Part 5.


ALASTAIR CROOKE: I think there are different______________________the Taliban, and there are those that evidently are contemplating some form of areturn to________________, or at least to being participants in the ________________________ of Afghanistan, and are looking to finding a way back, if you like, into some sort of_________________________________________________________arrangement.
And I think it's likely that the authorities there, or _____________ the European governments and the UN, must be thinking about the possibility of trying to bring a________________government in Afghanistan, in order to ____________________it for the_____________________.
STEPHANIE KENNEDY: The UN hopes the _____________________ can be _______________ and the pair will be able to return to Afghanistan soon.

In London, this is Stephanie Kennedy reporting for AM.

 

 

A – Comprehension Test 3

Listen to the Webcast Britain in hot water over alleged Taliban meetings and report back the news story. Follow these questions.

1) Why have the tensions between Great Britain and Afghanistan been rising lately?

2) What are the British officials accused of?

3) On what grounds were Michael Semple and Mervyn Patterson declared persona non grata?

4) How does Rory Stewart characterize both officials expelled?

5) What is his attitude to the actions of the Afghan Government? Why does he find it strange?

6) What could have been the reason for the expulsion according to the journalist’s opinion?

7) What event provoked the international row?

8) How does Gordon Brown comment on the allegations?

9) Why does the talking to the insurgents go on? What groups of the Afghans create the grounds for the negotiations?

10) Why do local authorities, the European governments and the UN seek to bring a more inclusive government in Afghanistan?

11) What are UN hopes for the future of those two experts?


Text 4.





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