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AfPak in the eye of storm

Afrasiab Khan Khattak

The latest round of the so called Great Game which has started recently, like the previous ones played in 19th and 20th centuries, has brought new troubles for South Asia in general and for Afghan/Pashtuns in particular. The first round of the Great Game is supposed to have started between the British and Russian empires in 1830 when Britishers decided ...

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Deconstructing a dangerous myth about FATA

Muhammad Zubair Khan

The people of the tribal areas got what they had signed up for and their constitutional status is but a quid pro quo for retaining their ‘autonomy’. And so goes the argument: the constitutional arrangement for the Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA) reflects the written agreements that were concluded with the state on their behalf. Why would the tribes accept ...

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Islamabad believes Afghan situation to improve if US accepts its defeat


The Pakistani officials have said there will only be room for improvement if Washingtn accepts their defeats, failures in Afghanistan, apparently lobbying for a change in the new US strategy for Afghanistan and South Asia. The country’s foreign affairs minister khawaja Asif told the Senate on Wednesday that “There will only be room for improvement if Washington accepts their defeat, ...

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NATO to Moscow: Support Kabul for regional stability


KABUL: The NATO chief has told Russia that the best way to achieve stability in the region is to support the incumbent government in Kabul. NATO and Russia had a “frank exchange” on the security situation in Afghanistan, including the regional terrorist threats, Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg said. After a meeting of the NATO-Russia Council in Brussels, he said: “Our analyses differ considerably but ...

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US strategy messages nothing, but war continuation: Karzai


KABUL: Former President, Hamid Karzai emphasized that the US new strategy for Afghanistan had nothing, but the continuation of war and bloodshed. “The US with its new strategy wants to use Afghanistan as a jumping board, which has no message for Afghans, except the continuation of war,” Karzai said, speaking in Iran’s strategic council for foreign relationships in Tehran. He ...

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Pakistan blogger claims he was ‘tortured’ during detention: BBC report

Asim Saeed. Photo courtesy BBC

A Pakistani blogger who went missing earlier this year has applied for asylum in Britain after alleging he was tortured by a “state intelligence agency” during his disappearance. Aasim Saeed was one of a group of five liberal social media activists who were abducted in Pakistan in January 2017 before being released after several weeks. The Pakistani military has repeatedly denied ...

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No to CPEC unless Pakistan provides trade access to India: President Ghani


Afghan President Ashraf Ghani has said that his country will not be a part of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) unless it is given access to Pakistan’s Wagah and Attari border, DNA India reported on Wednesday. Addressing a gathering at the Vivekananda International Foundation in New Delhi, Ghani said that Kabul will restrict Pakistan’s access to central Asia if it is not ...

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Pakistan gives Tillerson frosty welcome after US warns over Taliban havens


US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson got a frosty welcome to Pakistan Tuesday after Washington turned up the heat on Islamabad for allegedly providing “safe havens” for Taliban militants. America’s top diplomat was quietly greeted by a mid-level Pakistani Foreign Office official at the military airport in the garrison city of Rawalpindi, an AFP photographer saw — a welcome devoid ...

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Kabul, New Delhi discuss US strategy for South Asia


President Ashraf Ghani met Indian external affairs minister, Sushma Swaraj in his residence in New Delhi, discussing the US new strategy for Afghanistan and South Asia and the region’s conditions after the after the declaration of the strategy, president’s office said Tuesday. Ghani left Monday for New Delhi for an official visit. The two sides called the US strategy useful ...

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US-Canadian couple held in Afghanistan, kept in Pakistan: CIA chief

A still image from a video posted by the Taliban on social media on December 19, 2016 shows American Caitlan Coleman (L) speaking next to her Canadian husband Joshua Boyle and their two sons.   Courtesy Taliban/Social media via REUTERS

KABUL: Contrary to Pakistan army claims, the CIA Chief has said that the US-Canadian couple kidnapped by Taliban insurgents in Afghanistan, but they were held inside Pakistan for five years before being freed. CIA Chief’s remark has been doing round in media while it is for the first time a US official has publicly stated that the couple and their ...

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