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Taliban kill 25 militiamen loyal to first Afghan VP Gen. Dostum

Khaama Press, Aug 29 2015, 9:37 am
Kabul: The Taliban militants have killed at least 25 militiamen loyal to first vice president Gen. Abdul Rashid Dostum shortly after he left northern Faryab province.

The incident took place in Khwajah Sabz Posh district after a group of the Taliban militants ambushed the militiamen while they were travelling.

The district police chief Mohammad Akbar Bashash said the militiamen were looking to travel to Astana Baba village area which fall to Taliban control yesterday.

In the meantime, a member of the provincial council Mohammad Tahir said at least 22 militiamen and 3 civilians were killed in the ambush.

Gen. Dostum arrived in Sar-e-Pul province late on Thursday afternoon after concluding a major military operation in northern Faryab province.

Gen. Dostum called on anti-government armed militants in the restive northern Sar-e-Pul province to surrender or face death upon his arrival in this provi....... Read more

August 29, 2015   No Comments

The time has come: by Ikram Sehgal in Daily Times, May 21, 2015

The writer is a defence analyst and security expert
When pushed into a corner, desperate people resort to desperate measures. In a macabre confirmation of the success of the ongoing Karachi operation, terrorists carried out a heinous attack against the Ismaili community on May 13, 2015, leaving at least 45 dead. Speaking fluent Urdu and wearing police uniforms, the attackers of the ill-fated bus left leaflets at the scene with derogatory remarks, condemning the Ismailis as “apostates”. Jundullah, which only last November announced its allegiance to Islamic State (IS), claimed responsibility for the atrocity.

Building on their phenomenal success in Swat and FATA, the armed forces turned their attention inwards, helping the law enforcement agencies target terrorists and their infrastructure, deeply embedded in the vast urban hinterlands of Pakistan. Addressing a recent seminar in Karachi, Corps Commander Karachi Lieutenant General Naveed Mukhtar said, “The Karachi oper....... Read more

May 21, 2015   No Comments

The fragile peace; by Dr Mohammad Ismail Khan in Daily Times, May 21, 2015

The author is assistant accountant general, Peshawar
There was relative calm for a few weeks. This let up in terrorist incidents made us believe that we had overcome the menace of terrorism. The leadership, both khakis and civvies, were over the moon for bringing back some semblance of normalcy to the war-torn land. However, all this was merely a lull before the terrorists struck again on May 13, 2015, in Karachi. This time, the targets were the innocent men and women of the Ismaili community. As failure is always an orphan and success has many fathers, a blame-game ensued to fix responsibility for the security lapse. The sequel of such terrorist incidents has become too predictable in our country.

Condemnatory statements as usual poured in from all quarters and the opposition tried to extract maximum mileage from this dastardly act of terror. The next day was declared a national day of mourning. The Station House Officer (SHO) and Deputy Superintendent Police (DSP) were s....... Read more

May 21, 2015   No Comments

Economic growth — missing the mark: Editorial in The Express Tribune, May 21st, 2015.

The Pakistani economy has been projected to have a growth rate of 4.2 per cent for the outgoing fiscal year, which ends on June 30, meaning the government has missed the ambitious target of 5.1 per cent it had set itself. According to a provisional reading of the growth in GDP, the country was just marginally ahead of its performance last year but well short of the target. However, the projections remain largely in line with what the IMF, the ADB and the World Bank had predicted for Pakistan. The announcement of a 4.2 per cent growth rate does not come as a surprise. The growth is higher than what Pakistan had achieved in the last few years and is due in part to the perception of a pro-business government in place. There is no doubt that the Nawaz Administration has always tried to instill confidence in the business community — maybe a few select sectors to be more precise — and managed to help the capital markets’ performance as well. It was also largely to its advantage that gl....... Read more

May 21, 2015   No Comments

One more tax: edit in The News, May 21, 2015

Rs100 billion – this is the amount of useless taxes that will be added to the burden of taxpayers in Pakistan after parliament approved the Gas Infrastructure Development Cess (GIDC) Bill, 2014, on Tuesday. The GIDC is a controversial tax that had been imposed by the PPP in 2011 to cover the cost of building the Pakistan-Iran gas pipeline. The tax has become redundant as the PML-N government has decided against going forward with the Pak-Iran gas pipeline. However, the government has still insisted on collecting the tax through an ordinance in September 2014 which was extended by parliament for another six months. The Rs100 billion that has been collected in GIDC for 2014-15 is lying in a separate account. Ideally, the amount should have been returned to consumers since the ‘infrastructure development’ that it was supposed to fund is no longer going ahead. In order to get the bill approved before issuing the federal budget for 2015-16, the PML-N government summoned an emergency s....... Read more

May 21, 2015   No Comments

Security for policemen ; Editorial in Dawn, May 21st, 2015

ACROSS Pakistan, police officers — especially those involved in sensitive counterterrorism work — are at particular risk of falling to the assassin’s bullet. This is especially true in Karachi, Balochistan and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, where the killings of men in uniform are nothing new.Yet, these incidents, especially when they go unpunished, demoralise the force and embolden the militants.Many a fine officer has gone too soon, and on Wednesday another name was added to the growing list of policemen targeted by militants.DSP Bahadur Khan, associated with the counterterrorism department of the Peshawar police, was shot early in the day and succumbed to his wounds, while his killers managed to flee.As per reports, the banned TTP has claimed responsibility for the killing. On Tuesday, a police constable in Mingora was also killed; some media reports have suggested that the TTP may have had a hand in that crime as well.

The countert....... Read more

May 21, 2015   No Comments

Hit-List : edit in The Nation, May 21, 2015

Deputy Superintendent Bahadur Khan was shot dead by the Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) in Peshawar on Wednesday. Most recently in Karachi, there was a bloodbath. Peshawar and Karachi are strongholds of insurgents, little did we realize that they would become the twin cities of terror. DSP Bahadur Khan was on his way to drop his daughter to school, when motorcycle-riding gunmen opened fire on him. His daughter survives him, but the fact is that ordinary life in Pakistan has been hijacked by terrorism. Victims don’t even have to unequivocally offend religion to die now, it could be anything, so as citizens, we cannot protect ourselves anymore; we are at the mercy of these men on bikes with guns. Coincidentally, DSP Bin Qasim Abdul Fateh Sangri was shot dead in Karachi, on May 1, again by the TTP. “DSP Fateh was number 37 on our hit-list,” was the statement by the TTP spokesperson, Muhammad Khorasani.
How long is this hit-list and who else is on it, only time will tell. But ....... Read more

May 21, 2015   No Comments

Is Zardari on counter offensive?: by Mazhar Abbas in The News, May 21, 2015

ISLAMABAD: It appears the PPP Co-Chairman Asif Ali Zardari is in a counter offensive mood, giving clean chit to the Sindh Chief Minister Syed Qaim Ali Shah by reposing confidence in him, asking him to continue and ruling out any change in Sindh.

Is he apprehending something unusual in the coming weeks or months in Karachi in particular? Will he get the required political support from Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif?Is this reaction to some of the major decisions taken during the extraordinary visit of Army Chief General Raheel Sharif along with intelligence chiefs to Karachi last week?

It appears the former president is not very pleased with the rising influence of the establishment and its taking charge of the “law and order” and the Sindh Home Ministry.

The changing mood of the former president came days after some startling disclosures were made by the Corps Commander Karachi Lt. Gen. Naveed Mukhtar in his speech about the prevailing situation in this mega city,....... Read more

May 21, 2015   No Comments

Bilawal coming next month to resume politics: Zardari

LAHORE – PPP Co-Chairman Asif Ali Zardari on Wednesday said that Bilawal was coming to Pakistan next month to resume political activities under his supervision.
In an interview to a local news channel, Zardari said that on his arrival in Pakistan next month, Bilawal would visit all the four provinces alongwith him and interact with party men.
To a question about Bilawal’s security, he said that security arrangements would have to be made during his movement which may be kept restricted at certain places depending on the situation.
When asked to comment on his earlier statement about Bilawal’s being an immature politically, Zardari said that he had infact stated that Bilawal would get mature with the passage of time.
“I would teach him politics”, he added.
Answering a question about Bilawal’s future political role, Zardari expressed the hope that he would contest the next general elections scheduled to be held in 2018.
He was confident....... Read more

May 21, 2015   No Comments

Officers from KP, Balochistan facing discrimination: ANP

PESHAWAR: Awami National Party (ANP) secretary general Mian Iftikhar Hussain has accused Central Selection Board of meting out injustices to the officers of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Balochistan working in District Management Group and Police Service Pakistan.

In a statement here, the ANP leader said the officers hailing from Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Balochistan were faced with discrimination in promotion. He said in Central Selection Board majority of the members belonged to the Punjab province who influenced the decisions.

The ANP leader said other smaller provinces also had reservations over the decisions of the promotion board for ignoring the officials from these provinces. He said his party would take up the issue at every platform to address the injustice.

The ANP leader said opposition leader in the National Assembly Syed Khursheed Shah had also taken up the issue of the officials belonging to Sindh. He said the central selection board has ordered promotion of D....... Read more

May 21, 2015   No Comments