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SOURCE: REUTERS

The Taliban claimed responsibility for the downing of a “special American aircraft” flying over Afghanistan on what it described as an intelligence mission, while the U.S. military said there was no indication the plane was hit by hostile fire. The crash happened on Monday in the Taliban-controlled Sado Khel area of the Deh Yak district in Ghazni province, the Taliban’s spokesman Zabihullah Mujahed said in a message via WhatsApp.

“A special American aircraft which was flying over Afghanistan for an intelligence mission was tactically shot down by the Taliban,” Mujahed said. “All on board including high-ranking CIA officers were killed.” Continue reading

SOURCE: THE PRINT

Primetime debates on Pakistani news channel is truly ‘next level’. Forget the shouting, slamming, slapping that goes on all the time between panellists to win an argument. Now there are boots in the studio. Literally. Pakistan’s water minister Faisal Vawda brought an army boot with him to a TV debate. He placed it next to his glass of water.

The ‘boot’ in Pakistani politics signifies the ‘hidden’ role of the establishment that most people don’t want to utter out loud. But Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf’s Vawda had to score points against his rivals from Pakistan Peoples Party and Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz on the extension given to army chief Gen Qamar Javed Bajwa. Continue reading

SOURCE: DAWN

Pakistan on Thursday conducted a successful training launch of surface to surface ballistic missile (SSBM) Ghaznavi, a press release from Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR). According to the press release, this launch was carried out as part of a training exercise of Army Strategic Forces Command “aimed at rehearsing operational readiness procedures during day and night.”

Director General Strategic Plans Division Lieutenant General Nadeem Zaki Manj appreciated the operational preparedness of the Army Strategic Forces Command. He commended them for displaying a very high standard of proficiency in handling and operating the weapon system. Continue reading

SOURCE: WION

Wednesday criticised the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) claiming that there is no transparency in the projects. Speaking at an event in Pakistan, Wells also claimed that the companies which are blacklisted by World Bank got contracts under the multi-billion project.

Wells said, there was no transparency in the CPEC projects and Pakistan’s debt burden was growing due to the Chinese financing, as per the local media reports. Wells also reiterated her warnings that it will increase cash-strapped Pakistan’s debt burden and urged the country to rethink its involvement in it. Continue reading

SOURCE: DAILY MAIL

Laurence Fox has admitted that he didn’t know Sikh soldiers fought shoulder-to-shoulder with the British in World War One. The actor told Good Morning Britain ‘I’m not a historian’ as he stumbled over a statement he made on a podcast on Saturday. He said the inclusion of a Sikh soldier in a scene in Sam Mendes’ film 1917 was ‘incongruous’ in an interview with James Delingpole, sparking a backlash.

But today when asked about his remarks by Piers Morgan and Susanna Reid about whether the inclusion of the character was historically out-of-place, he replied: ‘I’m not a historian i don’t know.’ Continue reading

SOURCE: TIMES NOW

In what could possibly be a massive blow to Prime Minister Imran Khan’s duplicity on the human rights situation in Pakistan, exclusive pictures have come up that show proof of detention camps in the country which has time and again been called out in globally for its excesses against ethnic and religious minorities.

Pakistan has been building these detention camps which many believe are where the Baloch are punished for expressing dissent. The Balochistan-Khyber Pakhtunkhwa region has for a long time been protesting against the country’s establishment citing atrocities at the hands of the local militia and the administration, government after government. Continue reading

SOURCE: PTI

Pakistan has urged the US to support its bid to exit from the grey list of the FATF ahead of a key meeting of the international terror financing watchdog in Beijing in which it will scrutinise Islamabad’s efforts to adopt stricter laws against terror financing and money laundering.
A Pakistani delegation arrived in Beijing on Sunday for the three-day face-to-face talks with the Financial Action Task Force Working Group that would start on January 21. The briefing will go over whether Pakistan has complied with an earlier agenda presented to it by the Paris-based financial task force, The News reported.

The Pakistani delegation is being led by Minister for Economic Affairs Division Hammad Azhar and comprises representatives of National Counter Terrorism Authority (Nacta), the foreign ministry, the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP), among others. Continue reading

SOURCE: TIMES NOW

Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan backed China over the persecution of Uighur Muslims. In an interview with the German state broadcaster, Deutsche Welle Khan was asked about not being very vocal about the Chinese suppression of the Uighur people. To this, the Pakistani Prime Minister replied that “the scale of what is happening in India is not comparable to what is supposedly happening to the Uighurs in China.”

The other reason Khan gave was that China was Pakistan’s great friend and helped the country in its most difficult times because of the economic crisis his government had inherited. Continue reading

SOURCE: ENS

Eight US troops were flown from Iraq after showing signs of concussions from Iranian missile strikes, the military said Thursday, despite earlier statements by President Donald Trump that no Americans had been injured. Col. Myles Caggins III, a spokesman for the US-led coalition in Baghdad, added Friday that the service members’ symptoms began to surface only after the president’s announcement. He said that there had been no other injuries.

The Jan. 8 attack on bases in Iraq’s western desert and near Irbil, Iraq, were launched in retaliation for the killing of Gen. Qassem Soleimani, a senior figure in Iran’s military, in a drone strike ordered by Trump. The lack of American deaths in the strikes was a relief to US officials, who had feared the killing of the general and its aftermath could set off a larger regional conflict. Continue reading

SOURCE: WION

Pakistan is allegedly involved in nuclear smuggling and illicit acquisition of missile technology.Five Pakistani businessmen have been indicted in the United States. They have been accused of operating an international network of front companies to export US-origin products to Pakistan for use in the country’s nuclear programme.

It has once again been caught in the act with the indictment of five Pakistanis who were associated with a Rawalpindi-based front company business world.The US statement indicates that the busting of the Pakistani smuggling ring also has security bearing on India.The alleged behaviour of these five individuals is more than a violation of US export laws. Continue reading

SOURCE: AFP

Five men have been indicted in the United States for allegedly running an international network that purchased US products for Pakistan’s nuclear weapons program. “The defendants smuggled US origin goods to entities that have been designated for years as threats to US national security for their ties to Pakistan’s weapons programs,” assistant attorney general John Demers said in a statement.

The five, who live outside the United States and have not been apprehended, were indicted by a grand jury in October, the Justice Department said. The indictment was unsealed on Wednesday and arrest warrants are pending. Continue reading

SOURCE: ZEE MEDIA

Iran`s Foreign Minister Javad Zarif on Tuesday arrived India amid tensions growing between his country and the US post the killing of Iranian general Qasem Soleimani and the retaliatory Iranian missile strikes on US bases in Iraq. Zarif will meet Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday (January 15). On Thursday, Zarif will further deliberate on regional issues with his Indian counterpart S Jaishankar over breakfast after which he will visit Mumbai to interact with a group of business leaders.

After Soleimani`s killing in a US drone attack in Baghdad on January 2, Iran on January 8 launched a missile attack on an air base in Iraq housing US troops, sparking fears of a wider conflict and leading countries that have good relations with Tehran and Washington to mediate in a bid to ease tensions. Continue reading

SOURCE: WION

Asif Ghafoor the Director-General of Pakistan’s Inter-Services Public Relations was heavily trolled on Friday for sharing an announcement related to the opening of a Public Highway.

The public chooses twitter to express their anger and frustration over the military’s involvement in the matter of civilians.The Spokesperson Pakistan Armed Forces,  Major General Asif Ghafoor issued a statement on the opening a section of the Lahore-Sialkot motorway for the public. The announcement should have ideally come from the Ministry of Communications and Highways. Continue reading

SOURCE: THE PRINT

The second-most senior Pakistan Army officer, General Sarfraz Sattar, has allegedly been forced to resign after being kept under house arrest with his family for weeks. The claim was made by Pakistan journalist Gul Bukhari on Twitter. General Sattar was next in line to be General Qamar Javed Bajwa’s successor as army chief until his extension scuppered the former’s prospects.

Sources in the Indian security establishment told ThePrint that there was no independent confirmation of his forced resignation. As director general of the strategic plans division, Sattar headed the operations of Pakistan’s nuclear command until November, when the charge was given to Lt Gen. Nadeem Zaki Manj. At the time, Pakistani media had reported that Sattar had retired. Continue reading

SOURCE: AFP

Iran’s Revolutionary Guards said Sunday they did not aim to kill US troops when firing a wave of missiles last week at Iraqi bases hosting American forces. “Our aim was not really to kill enemy soldiers. That was not important,” the Guards’ commander, Hossein Salami, told parliament, referring to Wednesday’s missile operation launched to avenge the killing of a top Iranian general.

“The physical destruction (caused by the missiles) was just because we wanted to say that we are so much more superior to the enemy (and) that we can hit any point we choose,” he added, in a speech aired on state television. Iran launched a wave of missiles at bases in Iraq hosting American and other foreign troops on Wednesday. Continue reading