• Friday, August 01, 2014

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Talking trade with India

HAVING missed an opportunity to advance opening trade with India, Pakistan now finds itself dealing with the consequences. The forthcoming talks between the foreign secretaries of the two countries could have been an opportunity to move further down the road of regional economic cooperation and integration, but instead they are going to spend their time testing the waters. Going by the words of Pakistan's foreign secretary, the talks will aim to “discuss the resumption of the dialogue process to...

Pakistan army hits back

A  major operation by the Pakistan army has recently been conducted in the frontier areas bordering Afghanistan to try to control the militant groups that have so strongly established themselves there. The frontier region has long been a haven for numerous groups of local and imported armed militants; they have been there for ages, seemingly a law unto themselves outside the reach of the regular administration, but recently they have become bold and confident enough to challenge the Pakistani state...


Fantasy-peddling is not diplomacy

Fantasy-peddling is not diplomacy

SAINTS are the exception. Anyone else in the writing business, including those of us at the nether end of the business, can rarely resist the temptations of glory. The danger is obvious: vainglory, that purgatory space where imagination outstrips the boundaries of reality and ego functions on the basis of what we imagine we...

Why we cannot abandon Afghanistan

THE recent spate of suicide bombings across Afghanistan remind us that the Taliban-al-Qaeda forces are alive and well, and are becoming increasingly active as the time for the Nato withdrawal nears. The suicide car bomb attacks on July 15 in a market place and a mosque in Paktika province claimed 89 lives, mostly women and children. The attacks are aimed at creating panic and despondency among the Afghans who had, despite Taliban threat, held the third presidential election on...

Pak cops foil attack against PM's home

Pak cops foil attack against PM's home

Pakistani police fought for more than 10 hours with militants they said were planning to attack the home of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, officials said Thursday. An intelligence officer and two militants were killed when the shootout erupted during an overnight operation in the eastern city of Lahore, said police chief Zulfiqar Hameed. Shuja...

US in South Asia: Declining influence

THE US' influence in South Asia is fast diminishing and this trend is likely to continue deep into the future. In the aftermath of World War II, South Asia was considered a strategic backwater by the US policymakers. Additionally, South Asia offered little economic opportunities to the US corporate sector. With the solitary exception of turning Pakistan into an alliance partner, the US cared little about this region. Even in the realm of alliance politics, the US had little to...

News Analysis

DC's desire, Inu's reassurance

The deputy commissioner of Dhaka did not exactly endear himself to anyone when he proposed the revival of a law that empowers bureaucrats to cancel the declarations of newspapers. He believes, or wants people in the corridors of power to believe, that there are newspapers in Bangladesh which engage in anti-state acts or which publish news that hurts the religious sentiments of people. That has been an obnoxious way in which governments, beginning with the Ayub Khan regime in Pakistan,...


Pakistan's war at home

Pakistan's war at home

LAST month, after years of indecision, Pakistan's military launched a full-scale military operation in the North Waziristan Tribal Agency aimed at eliminating terrorist bases and ending the region's lawlessness. In particular, the army wants to clear out foreign fighters who are using the territory as a base for various jihads around the Muslim...

Modi pitches for Saarc satellite

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi yesterday asked the country's space scientists to develop a South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (Saarc) satellite to benefit the neighbouring countries. "We have done a lot (in space science) but the heart wants more. I have proposed to our scientists that they develop a Saarc satellite. This will help all our neighbours," Modi said while congratulating the scientists of Indian Space Research Organisation on the launch of a rocket carrying five satellites at Sriharikota...

Pakistan 'charity head' lambasts US

Pakistan 'charity head' lambasts US

The head of a Pakistani charity group whom the US and India accuse of masterminding the 2008 Mumbai attacks has dismissed new US sanctions. Hafiz Saeed told the BBC the US was only targeting Jamaat-ud Dawa to win India's backing in Afghanistan. The US says the self-declared charity is a front for militant group Lashkar-e...

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