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Showing posts from August 31, 2018


Lawrence Sellin | Retired Colonel, U.S. Army Reserve  1:06 PM 08/31/2018 For many, it was a stunning development. China will  build  a brigade-size military training facility in the strategic Wakhan Corridor, the land bridge between Tajikistan and Pakistan, which is located in Afghanistan’s northeast Badakhshan province and borders China. Although Beijing denied the claim that hundreds of Chinese soldiers will be deployed to Afghanistan, a source close to the Chinese military stated, “Construction of the base has started, and China will send at least one battalion of troops, along with weapons and equipment, to be stationed there and provide training to their Afghan counterparts.” For those who have been closely following growing Chinese influence in Afghanistan, the above report comes as no surprise. A year earlier on August 14, 2017, Spogmai radio quoted the spokesman for the Afghan Ministry of Def

Russia’s Deadly Embrace of Pakistan

Russia’s Deadly Embrace of Pakistan By Vinay Kaura August 31, 2018 Vladimir Putin meets with former Pakistani PM Nawaz Sharif via Office of the President of the Russian Federation BESA Center Perspectives Paper No. 936, August 31, 2018 EXECUTIVE SUMMARY:  In a far-reaching development for India’s strategic interests, Russia signed an agreement with Pakistan for naval cooperation on July 31. The agreement comes on the heels of an accord between Moscow and Islamabad in April of this year to increase cooperation in the training of armed forces personnel in the naval field and the conduct of a wide range of joint military exercises. Russia is building military, diplomatic, and economic ties with Pakistan that could upend historic alliances in the South Asian region. Ties between India and Russia date back to the Cold War, but relations between Cold War adversaries Russia and Pakistan are now being developed on the basis of a convergence of interests. With Washington suspending or

Is China's Belt and Road working? A progress report from eight countries

Source: Nikkei Asia Review A Chinese construction worker at the site of a Chinese-backed hotel complex in Colombo in October 2015   © Getty Images COVER STORY Beijing's infrastructure push clouded by project delays and mounting debt GO YAMADA, Nikkei senior deputy editor, STEFANIA PALMA, Asia editor at The BankerMarch 28, 2018 15:00 JST GWADAR, Pakistan -- The idea of transforming the ancient fishing village of Gwadar into a bustling port city has been around since at least 1954, when Pakistan commissioned the U.S. Geological Survey to examine its coastline. Their conclusion: Gwadar, which sits on the Arabian Sea, would be an ideal location for a deep-water port.    Gwadar's potential went unrealized for decades, but it is now at the heart of a hugely ambitious plan known as the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor, or CPEC. China has pledged to spend $63 billion to bolster Pakistan's power plants, ports, airports, expressways and other infrastructure under the initiativ

To Balance Chinese Influence, India Needs to Ensure Its Africa Gaze Is More Constant

To Balance Chinese Influence, India Needs to Ensure Its Africa Gaze Is More Constant Luke Patey August 31, 7:00 am File photo of Prime Minister Narendra Modi with IAFS delegations during the India Africa Forum Summit in New Delhi. Credit: PTI As China’s top-level Africa forum is held in Beijing on September 3 and 4, and India is slated to hold its next triennial Africa summit in the near future, the foreign policy establishment in New Delhi will once again turn its geopolitical gaze west to the African continent. India’s trade with Africa has grown in leaps and bounds over the last decade, but all too often, once official visits and large summits come to an end, the attention New Delhi places on Africa quickly fades. This time, however, India should stay tuned. Africa can no longer be viewed as intermittent and peripheral interest. Instead, Africa must be appreciated as part and parcel of New Delhi’s challenge of recouping lost geostrategic ground from China’s expansionist ende

Pakistan government should criminalize enforced disappearances – HRCP

August 30, 2018 HRCP has recapitulate the urge for government to criminalize enforced disappearances. According to details received by The Balochistan Post, On the International Day of the Disappeared, the Human Rights Commission of Pakistan (HRCP) in a press release with the title ‘Enforced disappearances exclude every human right’ has restated the need for the government to criminalize enforced disappearances. HRCP has said that, ‘even as we express solidarity with forcibly ‘disappeared’ people and with their friends and families, it is worth reminding ourselves exactly why the phrase ‘missing person’ is a gross understatement in terms of human rights. ‘An enforced disappearance implies the absence of the right to liberty, security and life. It means having no guarantee whatsoever of the right not to be subjected to torture or to inhuman or degrading treatment. It puts the person entirely out of reach of the right to a fair trial or effective remedy. For victims’ families and fr

Baloch militants claim multiple attacks on Pakistani forces

August 31, 2018 Two armed groups claim responsibility for multiple attacks on forces in Balochistan. According to details received by The Balochistan Post, a pro-freedom armed group United Baloch Army(UBA) in a press release has stated that ‘Pakistani forces launched massive military operations in various areas of district Mastung Balochistan, with aerial and ground troops’. Pakistani forces are indiscriminately aerial bombarding and targeting civilians, which is resulting in many casualties but because of the absence of communication sources it is not possible to collect the exact figures of damages’. Mureed Baloch, the spokesman to UBA further claimed that, during the military operations in Dilband, Johan, Isplinji, Sheeshar, Narmuk and Robdar areas of District Mastung, our ‘Sarmachars’ (fighters) targeted the Pakistani forces and killed 5 personnel of Pakistani forces and injured numbers in different combatss”. Whereas, another armed group, Baloch Republican Army has taken the

A Letter to the Baluch Diaspora by Zahra Baluch

Hope you all are doing well. I am also doing great, Alhamdulillah. I want to state that I am a political activist, my name is Zahra Baluch. I have been involved in the Baloch Movement for last two years, and I have been doing proper activism since one year. I know that it is really a small period of time to observe and to comment for anything, but I have few questions to ask. Its not a judgment but questions only, from all companions, all leadership who are living out of Balochistan’s territory, specially in the western world. Today, 30th August, is the International Day for Enforced Disappearances and Baloch political activists are running an online campaign. All of the political activist along with human rights activists are the part of this campaign, and I am literally sure to say that our voice is only resonating in our own circles or at the best to the people who have soft side for the movement, but not reaching to the bigger platform, like the United Nations (UN). In my opinion

Statement of Chairman Missing Persons Commission doesn’t represent facts and is dissemination of military institutions’ stance

Persons Commission doesn’t represent facts and is dissemination of military institutions’ stance: BSO Azad (Current Balochistan) Statement of Chairman Missing Persons Commission doesn’t represent facts and is dissemination of military institutions’ stance: BSO Azad The Central Spokesperson Baloch Students Organization Azad said on the occasion of the International Day of the Enforced Disappearance that the practice of enforced disappearance is continued with severe intensity in entire Balochistan and the number of the enforcedly disappeared persons is increasing with severe speed.  The number of the enforcedly missing persons has crossed 40,000 in Balochistan. Youth, elder, children and women are among the missing persons and nearly five thousand missing persons were killed during torture and their mutilated bodies were thrown in deserted areas in Balochistan. The issue of the enforcedly disappeared persons is attaining a dangerous direction in Balochistan and the silence of the i

Chinese Influence Operations: Entities


TRIVIUM CHINA HEARD IN BEIJING “Africa has chosen China.” - Roch Marc Christian Kaboré , President of Burkina Faso   Some context:  Kaboré arrived in Beijing Thursday, ahead of next week’s Forum on China-Africa Cooperation. Kaboré, like many other African heads of state, appreciates China’s sustained efforts to improve ties with the continent. More in the Tip Sheet below. Have you chosen to forward the Tip Sheet? We’d appreciate your efforts. Send today’s edition to friends and colleagues who can  click here to subscribe. And don’t forget to keep the comments coming. Have a great weekend, everybody! THE TIP SHEET DRIVING THE DAY 1. Looking forward to FOCAC   The Forum on China-Africa Cooperation  (FOCAC) will commence in Beijing on Monday. Some context:  FOCAC was created in 2000 as a forum to discuss Sino-African relations. Its members include China and all African states except Eswatini (formerly Swazliand), which doesn’t formally recognize the PRC. It’s held every three

Agriculture a Boon for Pakistan’s Economy and CPEC

The Pakistan Business Council states that "Pakistan's agricultural productivity ranges between 29 percent and 52 percent, far lower than the world's best averages for major commodities". Quratul Ain Hafeez AUGUST 31, 2018 Agriculture comprises of a big chunk of Pakistan’s economy, and a bulk of the country’s population implicitly relies on this sector. According to Pakistan’s Statistical Bureau, about 24 percent of the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) is made up of contributions from the  agricultural sector . It constitutes 43 percent of the labour force and is the largest source for foreign exchange earnings. But unfortunately, being an agrarian economy, the foreign reserves earned through this sector are not as high as they should be. A couple of months back, a report released by the Pakistan Business Council (PBC) states that “Pakistan’s agricultural productivity ranges between 29 percent and 52 percent, far lower than the world’s best averages for major commoditi