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Showing posts from January 15, 2018

#FreeKarachi posters in US Murtaza Ali Sha Wajid Ali Syed January 15, 2018 LONDON / WASHINGTON : Indian prime minister Narendra Modi's close aide and Bhartiya Janata Party's New Delhi spokesperson has eerie links to the expensive advertisements that sprung up in two major international cities across the world to malign Pakistan. The so-called 'Free Balochistan campaign' adverts appeared one after another in London and then New York bearing similar language, content and graphics on billboards and messages splashed across taxicabs. The malicious campaign, apparently, started off in New Delhi, where a group led by Modi's aide Tajindra Pal Singh Bagga defaced walls around the Pakistan High Commission and pasted posters demanding an end to the alleged human rights violations in Balochistan. Around that time, Tajindra Bagga was appointed as spokesperson of the ruling BJP in New Delhi. A Baloch source fa

Mystery vessel lurking near Senkakus last week was Chinese nuclear attack sub, Japan’s defense chief says KYODO, JIJI JAN 15, 2018 A Chinese vessel spotted in waters near the Japan-administered Senkaku Islands last week was a nuclear-powered attack submarine, Defense Minister Itsunori Onodera said Monday. The Shang-class submarine was detected Thursday while submerged just outside Japanese territorial waters near the Senkaku Islands in the East China Sea. On Friday, it was seen in the high seas, cruising with a Chinese flag. Tokyo filed a protest with Beijing, saying the sub’s presence raised bilateral tensions. “We are seriously concerned over acts that unilaterally raise tensions. We’ll keep our guard up to respond swiftly if a similar incident happens,” Onodera told reporters, noting that the Shang-class vessel is capable of launching long-range cruise missiles. A Defense Ministry source speculated that China may ha

hina making new inroads in Indian Ocean with cheap subs THE ASAHI SHIMBUN January 15, 2018 at 15:25 JST Zoom A candidate site in Payra, Bangladesh, to base a submarine purchased from China (Eishiro Takeishi) To the alarm of India, China is waging a submarine sales offensive at bargain prices to nations with Indian Ocean coastlines. To date, Bangladesh, Pakistan and Thailand have either purchased or agreed to acquire Chinese submarines. China's aggressive marketing of submarines has got India worried about Beijing's intentions in light of the Asian power's steady maritime advances in the region, as well as Pacific waters. Bangladesh was first to take advantage of the cut-price submarines offered by China by acquiring two used Ming-class diesel-powered vessels in 2013. Bangladesh began operating them in March 2017. One local military source put the cost of each submarine at $100 million, or one-tenth of the price of a new European submarine. In April 2017, Thailand

Balochistan ‘political game’ draws minister’s ire By  APP Published: January 15, 2018 INTERIOR MINISTER AHSAN IQBAL. PHOTO: REUTERS LAHORE:  Interior Minister Ahsan Iqbal has said political instability and mistrust in democracy will eventually hamper the process of progress and prosperity in the country. Talking to media on Sunday, he said recent ‘political game’, orchestrated in Balochistan, will not certainly bring out positive developments for the province and the country. “Is there any precedent in the world that a member having support of five MPAs only, ever have become chief minister?” he questioned. NAB Balochistan performance draws top court ire He said Balochistan had been facing a host of administrative and political issues and added that the ‘upheaval’ in the provincial assembly would somehow embolden some elements who were working against Balochistan interests. Responding to a question, the minister said the statement of the I

Balochistan’s politics NOTHING is certain in politics where vested interests and defaming others is considered rule of the game, which is unfortunate and clearly lacks decency. The dynamics of politics in the country’s resource rich and strategically located Balochistan province are also not different but in fact more intricate when compared with other regions. One saw its demonstration on Saturday in the election of province’s new chief minister Abdul Quddus Bizenjo of PML-Q — third CM in last four years — who managed to muster support from lawmakers of rival parties including PML (N) and National Party. In fact the floor crossing was at its peak in the election, clearly demonstrating that major political parties have least say in province’s politics. Vote of no confidence against the sitting CM is not un-democratic but at a time when few months were left in the next general elections, there was hardly any need to bring such an in house change in Balochistan

Murky Politics In Balochistan January 15, 2018 Balochistan just saw its 16th Chief Minister, with PML-Q’s Abdul Quddus Bizenjo taking his oath on Saturday. Bizenjo is the third chief minister in the four-and-a-half years, after the ouster of the former Chief Minister, PML-N’s Nawab Sanaullah Zehri. While, in Pakistan, disqualifications and resignations come and go, this instance is especially more unusual and murky. Bizenjo has the honour of having the lowest votes ever received by a provincial assembly candidate-having won his provincial assembly seat with a mere 544 votes, or 1.18% of eligible voters, in the 2013 general elections. Moreover, the circumstances surrounding his ascent to Chief Minister are also unusual- he is said to have been voted by dissident PML-N voters. This has raised rumours that this ouster was meant as a backlash against PML-N; however, the PML-N dissidents show that there is little party unity in Balochistan- people vote n

Why Balochistan has become a thorn in Pakistan's crown

hhttps// https Pakistani authorities have shown little sophistication in addressing the challenge of violence in the province. MANOJ JOSHI On Saturday, Abdul Quddus Bizenjo of the Pakistan Muslim League (Q), the so-called kings' party of the Musharraf era, took over as chief minister of Balochistan along with a 14-member cabinet. He is the third chief minister in four and a half years. Bizenjo replaced Sanaullah Zehri of the PML (Nawaz), who was forced to resign from office ahead of a no-confidence motion against him. Not surprisingly, 11 of the 14 incoming cabinet members are members of the PML(N). Army interference Most observers see this manoeuvre as the Pakistan Army’s move to punish former PM Nawaz Sharif by depriving his party of any sustenance. If anything, this is a sign that parties and ideology don’t matter in official Baloch politics, but it is individuals who are easily o

Who will guard the guards? Fawad Hasan JANUARY 15, 2018 That terrorist attacks and incidents of targeted killings have dramatically reduced in Karachi over recent past years is beyond doubt. Gangsters, who once could be spotted in various areas of the city, maintaining their hegemony, have been replaced by rifle-wielding law enforcers deputed under the famous, much-hyped Karachi operation, to the relief of many citizens. But at what cost this change – for better indeed – has come? And can that cost, if true and worrying, be discussed by the various stakeholders of society? While praises for the agencies involved in the Karachi operation, which began in September 2013 with the help of paramilitary forces, get highlights all over media platforms, seldom do we discuss the collateral damage – caused with impunity and powerful authority – that comes along. As the operation marks another anniversary, perhaps now is the time to debate on its intricacies and d

Balochistan’s deliverance? OP-ED Pakistan’s reactionary ruling classes have failed to create a unified nation state under their 70-year capitalist rule Lal Khan JANUARY 15, 2018 The resignation of the PML (N) lead government in Balochistan has ushered in a new political crisis in the present ‘democratic’ set-up doctored by the politicians and strategists in Islamabad and Rawalpindi. The so-called mainstream parties, PPP, miscellaneous Muslim Leagues and now the PTI have little roots in the province. Even their parliamentarians don’t take the authority of these parties’ central leaderships seriously. Balochistan status quo governments are perceived as pawns of the establishment and indulge in rampant corruption. The proclamations of Islamabad’s successive regimes of granting economic ‘privileges’ and political rights to Balochistan ended up in increased sufferings of its ordinary inhabitants. The feeling of deprivation and nationalist discrimination

Reform needed to boost construction of CPEC Reform needed to boost construction of CPEC Liu Zongyi THE Pakistani government officially launched the Long-Term Plan (LTP) for the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) on December 18, 2017. The plan covered key areas of cooperation including textile, chemicals, medicine, steel, home appliances, engineering equipment, construction materials, manufacturing, agriculture, gardening, ICT, finance and logistics. It is likely that industrial cooperation and building of industrial parks would face some resistance because of political reasons. 📌Conflict between federal and local authorities, clashes of interests between different provinces and partisan infighting have affected construction of the CPEC. Some political parties and local interest groups will capitalize on the CPEC, the LTP and bilateral industrial cooperation to achieve their political goals. Some elites and people in Pakistan consider China’s investment i