UN may trim Taliban blacklist

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The top UN official in Afghanistan says 10 people or entities with alleged links to the Taliban are being considered for removal from a UN sanctions list.

Staffan De Mistura said yesterday that the 10 names are being forwarded to the Security Council. The council will decide whether they will be taken off the blacklist that freezes assets and limits travel of 137 Taliban and al-Qa'ida figures. Mr De Mistura refused to identify them, and said more names could be put forward.

President Hamid Karzai has pushed for the removal of some Taliban figures from the blacklist as a way to encourage militants to enter peace talks.