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Other News: No Replacement Named for White House Environmental Adviser

September 7, 2009 at 12:00 AM EST
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In other news, the White House remained silent on who might replace an environmental adviser who resigned on Sunday, and Afghan President Hamid Karzai declared victory in last month's presidential election to a French newspaper.
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GWEN IFILL: In other news today, there was no word on who might replace a White House environmental adviser who resigned early Sunday.

Van Jones came under fire for signing a petition in 2004 suggesting the U.S. government was involved in the 9/11 attacks. He had also made vulgar comments about Republicans. A White House spokesman said Jones understood he was going to get in the way of the president’s agenda.

In Afghanistan, President Hamid Karzai told a French newspaper the U.S. is undermining him because he won’t be an American puppet. He also said he believes he won last month’s presidential election. But there were new accounts of extensive vote fraud. A spokesman for President Obama insisted the Afghans have to address the accusations.

President Karzai also said today a NATO airstrike last week was a major error of judgment. Friday’s raid targeted fuel tankers hijacked by the Taliban. Afghan officials claimed dozens of civilians were killed. German forces ordered the strike. Today, Germany conceded it’s likely civilians were among those killed.

The U.S. military also came under criticism for allegedly storming a hospital in western Afghanistan. The incident happened last Wednesday in Wardak Province, about 40 miles southwest of Kabul. A Swedish charity said U.S. troops claimed they were looking for Taliban insurgents.

ANDERS FANGE, country director, Swedish Committee For Afghanistan: They forced their way into the compound. They tied the hands of — of four of our guards and also two relatives, two patients who were standing there by — with the — with the guards. They went into the male ward and the female ward. They forced their way in to two locked rooms. They — they broke down the doors.

GWEN IFILL: U.S. military officials said they are investigating the charity’s claims.

In Iraq, a series of attacks killed at least 17 people. The worst was a suicide bombing at a police checkpoint in the west. The car was packed with explosives when it exploded near the provincial capital of Ramadi. Eight Iraqis were killed and 16 wounded.

The United Nations’ nuclear watchdog is warning that the situation involving Iran’s nuclear program has reached a stalemate. Mohamed ElBaradei said Iran remains in violation of international treaties.

MOHAMED ELBARADEI, director general, International Atomic Energy Agency: Iran has not defended its enrichment-related activities or its work on heavy water-related projects, as required by the Security Council, nor has Iran implemented the additional protocol. Likewise, Iran has not cooperated with the agency in connection with the remaining issues detailed fully and completely in the agency’s reports.

GWEN IFILL: The president of Iran, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, insisted Iran will not give up efforts to enrich uranium and produce nuclear fuel.

MAHMOUD AHMADINEJAD, president, Iran (through translator): From our point of view, Iran’s nuclear issue is over. We continue our work within the framework of global regulations and in close interaction with the International Atomic Energy Agency. We will never negotiate over obvious rights of the Iranian nation.

GWEN IFILL: The U.S. and European allies have given Iran until the end of September to agree to nuclear talks.