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Showing posts from July 21, 2017

Meet the Mullahs: Pakistan’s Neighborhood Islamist Evangelists LAWRENCE SELLIN Retired Colonel, U.S. Army Reserve 11:01 PM 07/21/2017 Few appreciate the depth and destructive consequences of Pakistan’s decades-long program to “Islamize” every aspect of the society in every remote corner of the country. Pakistan’s “Islamization” program was initiated by President Zia-ul-Haq (1977-1988), which involved the proliferation of Islamic schools “madrasas” and the promotion of Islamic law “Sharia,” was specifically designed create unity by suppressing ethnic separatism and make Pakistan the global Sunni leader, an effort that eventually led to the proliferation of Islamic terrorist groups within its borders. Even in the tiny isolated enclave of  Pidarek  in Balochistan’s western Kech District, Pakistan acquiesces if not actively supports a network that, quite literally, wields radical Islam like a weapon to suppress Baloch nationalism, to  conduct ethnic

A train that proclaims China's global ambition Philip Stephens Among this year's under-reported events was the opening of a new rail freight route. A locomotive, pulling wagons loaded with Chinese products, set out in early January from Yiwu in Zhejiang province. Some 18 days and seven countries later, it arrived at a goods depot almost 12,000km away on the eastern edge of London. The jury is out on the economics of this latest reincarnation of the ancient silk routes. That is beside the point. The journey above all else was a statement of China's geopolitical intent. In truth, it took several trains to complete the trip. The freight containers had to be switched at various points to take account of different track gauges, and then again for the last stretch through the Channel tunnel. It is not clear how frequently the trains will run, although the operator says it is offering a service much faster than by sea and much cheaper than by air.

China-Russia Trouble on the Arctic Silk Road? CHINA POWER Image Credit:  Russian Presidential Press and Information Office The future of the ‘Ice Silk Road’ is bright — as long as China-Russia relations remain on good terms. By Nengye Liu July 21, 2017 Climate change has resulted in the rapid retreat of Arctic sea ice. The Northern Sea Route, one of three Arctic shipping routes that connect East Asia and Europe along the Russian coastline, is now subject to more attention than ever before. The Northern Sea Route Administration notes that in 2016  traffic volume on the Northern Sea Route  reached 7,265,700 tonnes – an increase of 35 percent in comparison with 2015. As  the world’s third largest ship-owner , China has a strong interest in Arctic shipping, especially in the Northern Sea Route. That was reflected in China’s decision to include the Arctic in its Belt and Road Initiative. On June 20, 2017, China’s National Development and Reform Commis

Zehri concerned over attacks on security men July 22, 2017 QUETTA - Balochistan Chief Minister Nawab Sanaullah Zehri said on Friday the province was dealing with multiple challenges from target killings to terrorism. Terror attacks on law enforcement agencies are a matter of grave concern for the government, Zehri said while addressing a passing-out parade of Elite Force of the Balochistan Constabulary at the Anti-Terrorist Force (ATF) Training School. Minister for Planning and Development Dr Hamid Khan Achakzai, Adviser to Chief Minister on Education Abdul Rahim Ziaratwal and MPA Mir Hasim Kurd Gello also attended the passing-out parade of 227 personnel. The chief minister said the government was mobilising all available resources to enhance police capabilities and make Balochistan a cradle of peace. He said that civil and military leadership was making coordinated efforts to achieve this goal. On this occasion, Elite Force personnel dem

PAKISTAN: State complicity abetting Hazara bloodbath Saturday, 22 July 2017, 2:09 pm Press Release:  AHRC PAKISTAN: State complicity abetting Hazara bloodbath The Asian Human Rights Commission (AHRC) strongly condemns the recent spate of attacks on the Hazara community in Balochistan province. In the most recent incident, four family members belonging to the ethnic Hazara Shia community and their driver were shot dead on July 19, when unidentified gunmen opened fire on their vehicle near Balochistan's Mastung area. Balochistan in general, and Mastung city in particular, has become a killing field of the Hazaras, as the community is targeted by the Sunni Muslim extremist militant group, Lashkar-e-Jhangvi. Balochistan’s capital of Quetta has also been in a grip of violence, with 20 incidents of terrorism occurring within the span of six months, claiming the lives of 23 people. The militant groups have claimed nearly all the attacks

SUPPORT FOR SECULAR BALOCHISTAN TO HIT AT PAK TERROR Saturday, 22 July 2017 |  Lawrence Sellin  | in  Oped Pakistan has proved itself to be an unreliable US ally in Afghanistan and in the battle against Islamic extremism. The time is long overdue for alternative courses of action, including ramping up attacks on terrorist targets in Pakistan, a reduction in the US aid, and support for an independent, secular Balochistan as potential buffer, free of religious militancy American policy towards Pakistan is driven primarily by the war in Afghanistan and without the conflict that policy would be quite different. It is a policy of extortion, whereby, Pakistan, in exchange for money and a veil of undeserved international legitimacy, permits the resupply of US and NATO troops fighting in Afghanistan, while regulating the battle tempo, adjusting its support for and the flow of Taliban, Islamic State (ISIS), Haqqani network and other terroris

CPEC and SEZs: What’s so special in Economic Zones? 9      Special Economic Zones to play vital role in economic growth Naveed Ahmad Khan Industrial revolution had initiated in the 18th century but the world had to wait till 1959 to witness the establishment of first modern SEZ in Shannon, Ireland. As of 2006, International Labour Organization’s (ILO) database reported 3,500 zones in 130 countries and today one can find more than 4300 SEZs around the globe and the number is increasing rapidly. The reason behind this growth is the substantial development that comes with the establishment and successful operation of a SEZ. There is no specific definition of a SEZ; some call it a place where foreign companiesenjoy tax benefits, other know it as an area near port for export purpose while remaining consider it as a vehicle to attract FDI; all these descriptions are correct. Countries use SEZs as a tool for industrialization. A number of examples exist in the world from Asia

FBR to play crucial role in CPEC by setting up business friendly system 7      Our Correspondent Islamabad Minister for Planning, Development and Reform, Ahsan Iqbal has asked Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) to finalize a detailed plan to ensure its crucial role in China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) by setting up business friendly and state of the art documentation system, monitoring and implementation as well as evaluation and assessment mechanism. He issued these instructions while addressing a Business and Research Seminar on China Pakistan Economic Corridor organized by Directorate of Training and Research (Customs), FBR here on Friday. Secretary Planning, Development & Reform, Shoaib Ahmad Siddiqui was also present on the occasion while Project Director CPEC, Hassan Daud Butt the briefed the participants regarding CPEC projects. Minister noted that Customs has to play a crucial role in CPEC to facilitate effective channels for engaging Pakistan in glob

Petroleum Ministry to execute Rs190mn new projects in Balochistan   PARVEZ JABRI    JUL 21ST, 2017 13:20   0  VIEWS: 92 ISLAMABAD: Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Resources would execute two new projects worth Rs 190 million for coal exploration and evaluation in different localities of Balochistan besides carrying out a survey for underground water in Quetta.  "Out of total Rs 190.033 million estimated cost, an amount of Rs 88.023 million has been allocated to carry out two new schemes for coal exploration and evaluation in Nosham and Bahlol areas of Balochistan, and the underground water survey," official sources said.  Answering a question, they said the ministry would spend Rs 554.291 million, under the Public Sector Development Programme (PSDP 2017-18), to execute four ongoing and two new projects to step up exploration activities of natural resources for achieving self-reliance in the energy sector.  An amount of Rs 41