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Showing posts from June 23, 2020

Senate Finance Committee approves tax concessions for Gwadar port, free zone

By  ​ our correspondent  Jun.23,2020 Concessions would also benefit in terms of employment and development of the area, says committee ISLAMABAD:  The Senate Finance Committee unanimously approved on Tuesday the tax concessions proposed for Gwadar Port and Gwadar Free Zone in Finance Bill 2020-21. “These concessions would be very useful in operating Gwadar Port and Gwadar Free Zone,” the Finance Committee remarked. “As a result, its people would also benefit in terms of employment and development of the area.” Ministry of Maritime Affairs Secretary Rizwan Ahmad also attended the meeting. Earlier on June 18, the maritime affairs secretary admitted that the original Gwadar Port concession agreement offered only 20-year – not 40-year – tax holiday to port operators and there was no provision for extending the tax concession to sub-contractors. Secretary Ahmad made the disclosure in a meeting of the Senate Standing Committee on Finance, which had called the top bureaucrat to come and produ

India’s Renewed Efforts to destabilise Balochistan and Sindh

During the course of the War against Terror fought in Afghanistan, India has used the Afghan soil to destabilise Pakistan by sponsoring terrorism in Karachi, Balochistan and North/South Waziristan. As a part of its hybrid war against Pakistan, India has supported dissident elements of Balochistan and Karachi, such as the self-exiled Baloch young men, and self-exiled MQM London faction, living in the European countries. These exiled leaders fallaciously project a poor socioeconomic and HR situation in Balochistan and Sindh provinces by using social and other media platforms. In the latest move by the Indian media, it appears that India is making efforts to give asylum to some of the leaders of the above-mentioned groups to seemingly use them to form a government in exile to carry out false propaganda about the socioeconomic and HR situation in Balochistan and Sindh being bad, and, therefore, demanding independence of these provinces from Pakistan. As per the Times of India, dated 17 Nov

Pakistan probes torture of two journalists in Balochistan

June 24, 2020, 1:08 am A quarantine camp in Pakistan's Balochistan. Authorities are investigating after journalists said they were tortured for reporting on a camp near the Afghan border (AFP Photo/Banaras KHAN) Pakistan authorities said Tuesday they had launched an investigation after two journalists accused paramilitary forces of torturing them for reporting on a coronavirus quarantine centre near the Afghan border. Television reporters Saeed Ali Achakzai and Abdul Mateen Achakzai said they were abused while spending three days in detention in Pakistan's southwestern Balochistan province . Photos released to AFP by the men, who are not related, showed them with apparent red welts across their backs. Balochistan's home minister Ziaullah Langove said an inquiry was underway into the "brutal incident". " Three officials who were directly involved in the incident have been suspended," Langove told AFP, adding that the original case against the journalists

A BRIght future

Trivium China Last Thursday, Xi Jinping sent a letter to the attendees of the High-level Video Conference on Belt and Road International Cooperation. His message:  We’re (still) all in this together. Xi said that COVID-19 showed the importance of global cooperation (MoFA): “Humanity cannot succeed without solidarity, cooperation and multilateralism. The right approach to tackling global crises and realizing long-term development is through greater connectivity, openness and inclusiveness.” “This is where Belt and Road international cooperation can make a big difference China would – of course – play a leading role in fostering international harmony. “China will work with its partners to develop the Belt and Road into a model of cooperation for meeting challenges through unity, a model of health for protecting people’s safety and well-being, a model of recovery for restoring economic and social activity, and a model of growth for unlocking development potential.” Get smart:  For Xi, the

Balochistan: 4 persons including two journalists go missing

By admin June 22, 2020   Four people have been reported missing from Qillah Abdulla and Kharan districts of Balochistan, on Sunday. According to details, two journalists affiliated with private media outlets were abducted from Chaman, a border town in Balochistan’s Qila Abdullah district. As per the sources, the abducted journalists are affiliated with news channels broadcasting in Pashto and Urdu. Saeed Ali Achakzai, former president of Chaman Press Club and senior reporter of  Samaa News  and Abdul Mateen Achakzai of  Khyber News  have been missing since last evening. Journalists’ organizations have condemned their abduction and demanded immediate and unconditional release of both journalists. Pakistan is one of the most dangerous countries for fair and transparent journalism. In the 2019 Reporters sans frontières (alias Reporters Without Borders) press freedom index, Pakistan ranked at 142 out of 180 countries. Moreover, national and international journalists have been incapacitated

More Chinese technicians return to resume work on hydropower plants

JUNE 23, 2020 As many as 22 Chinese technicians from Gezhouba Corporation, China Energy Engineering Group (CEEC) have returned to Pakistan to resume work on hydropower plants after the completion of the quarantine period. They will resume work in Neelum-Jhelum hydropower plant, Suki Kinari hydropower station, Dasu hydropower plant, and Mohmand hydropower plant respectively being completed under China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC). More than 500 Chinese staff for these projects who had returned home for the Spring Festival were stranded at home due to the pandemic, causing an acute shortage in manpower. Also, the logistics and customs clearance of equipment and materials could not be carried out smoothly citing the same reason, hence it poses a challenge for the company to achieve the goal of these projects on schedule, according to China Economic Net. According to the arrangement, Suki Kinari hydropower station is planned to complete the excavation and support of the main powerhous

Beijing's China Pakistan Economic Corridor will be 'trillion dollar blunder', say experts

ANI |  Updated:  Jun 22, 2020 10:30 IST Tel Aviv [Israel], June 22 (ANI): The  China   Pakistan  Economic Corridor ( CPEC ), a flagship of  China 's imperialistic and expansionist agenda under its Belt and Road Initiative, is set to soon become a "trillion-dollar blunder" project, say analysts. The  CPEC , a collection of infrastructure projects that are currently under construction throughout  Pakistan , which were originally valued at $46 billion is now estimated to be $87 billion and only a quarter of which have been completed, according to geopolitical analyst Preity Upala writing in The Jerusalem Post  The leading Israeli English daily pointed out that  CPEC  was intended to rapidly modernize  Pakistan i infrastructure and strengthen its economy by the construction of modern transportation networks, numerous energy projects and special economic zones (SEZs). However, in recent years the  CPEC  has proved to be based on a false premise that a nation needs these massiv

Pakistan’s ‘Occupied Balochistan’

Drawing parallels with Bosnia, Palestine, and Kashmir, the Balochistan National Party chief accused the state of colonizing the region. By  Kunwar Khuldune Shahid June 22, 2020 https://thediplomat.com/2020/06/pakistans-occupied-balochistan/ Troops of Pakistan para-military forces patrol in the troubled area of Dera Bugti in Balochistan province of Pakistan, Jan 30, 2006. Credit: AP Photo/Arshad Butt ADVERTISEMENT In a  scathing speech  in the National Assembly on Wednesday, Balochistan National Party (BNP-M) Chief Akhtar Mengal asked that the province that he represents be declared “occupied Balochistan” if the state wants to continue its abuses in what is currently a “no-go area” spearheaded by “ death squads .” Announcing his party’s departure  from the federal government coalition led by the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI), Mengal underlined that the currently ruling party is the latest in a long list of culprits to have backtracked on its vows for Balochistan since 1948. Without nam

Baloch activists hold anti-Pakistan protest in Canada for human rights violations in Balochistan

DNA | Updated: Jun 22, 2020, 06:41 PM IST Baloch political and human rights activists gathered in Toronto on Sunday to protest against Pakistan and China for gross human rights violations in Balochistan. The protest was held under the aegis of Bramsh Solidarity Committee to express anger at the murders of women and children in Balochistan. The protesters condemned the senseless murders of two Baloch women by the Pakistan Army death squads in which a 4-year-old girl, Bramsh was wounded by a stray bullet. The protesters held placards demanding: Justice for Bramsh, Justice for Maliknaz and Kulsoom, Baloch Lives Matter, Dismantle Pak Army Death Squads in Balochistan, No to Chinese CPEC in Balochistan and China Hands-off Gwadar Port Balochistan. Zafar Baloch, a Baloch Human Rights Activist based in Canada said, “Baloch people are fighting against the Pakistan Army and against the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) of China and in which the decisions are made in Islamabad and GHQ, Rawalpindi whe

Pak receives 1st Afghan export since pandemic began

Pak receives 1st Afghan export since pandemic began Islamabad, June 23 (IANS) Pakistan received the first Afghan export via three major border points after nearly three months since the COVID-19 pandemic hit the country, a senior diplomat said here. Afghan Ambassador to Pakistan Atif Mashal told Xinhua news agency that trucks carrying fresh fruits and vegetables entered Pakistan on Monday via the Torkham and Chaman crossings with Afghanistan in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Balochistan provinces as well as Ghulam Khan crossing in North Waziristan tribal district. "The first convoy of Afghan trucks entered Pakistan via Torkham at around 10.30 a.m., which marked the formal resumption of exports to Pakistan," Mashal said. A Pakistani border official in North Waziristan Ghani-ur-Rehman told reporters that proper standard operating procedures (SOPs) were adopted during the cross-border trade in view of the coronavirus pandemic. Pakistan''s Foreign Ministry said trade will be in o

India's dissent over China's BRI poses no threat to SCO: Secretary-General Norov

PTI Updated Jun 22, 2020 | 15:04 IST China had unveiled the Belt and Road Initiative in 2013 with an aim to link Southeast Asia, Central Asia, the Gulf region, Africa and Europe with a network of land and sea routes. Beijing:  India's decision not to endorse China's ambitious Belt and Road Initiative in the SCO poses no threat to the bloc as its structure is democratic enough to allow a member country to opt-out of projects backed by others, its General-Secretary Vladimir Norov said. Sukkur-Multan Motorway in central Pakistan's Multan. The construction of the 392-km Sukkur-Multan Motorway under the CPEC has been completed. Photo Credit: IANS Beijing-headquartered Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) is an eight-member economic and security bloc. India and Pakistan were admitted into the grouping in 2017. Its founding members include China, Russia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan. In a wide-ranging interview with PTI, Norov, who is also a former foreign