AfPak Intel Sharing Deal; Russia Stops NATO Transit to Afghanistan; Modi Criticized For ‘Insensitive Comment’
Pakistan Pakistan, Afghanistan sign accord to share intel The spy agencies of Pakistan and Afghanistan have agreed to carry out “coordinated intelligence operations” against militants operating along the border of the two countries (AP, Reuters). Maj. Gen. Asim Saleem Bajwa announced on Twitter on Monday that Pakistan’s Inter-Services Intelligence and Afghanistan’s National Directorate of Security ...
Pakistan, Afghanistan sign accord to share intel
The spy agencies of Pakistan and Afghanistan have agreed to carry out “coordinated intelligence operations” against militants operating along the border of the two countries (AP, Reuters). Maj. Gen. Asim Saleem Bajwa announced on Twitter on Monday that Pakistan’s Inter-Services Intelligence and Afghanistan’s National Directorate of Security had signed a Memoranda of Understanding. The announcement came just days after Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, the army chief, and head of ISI visited Kabul to discuss cooperation against militant groups.
Fake diploma company threatens Pakistani journalist
The Pakistani company Axact responded to a New York Times report that exposed its role in peddling fake degrees online and the outburst of mockery on social networks in Pakistan that followed on Tuesday (NYT). The company posted a response on its website (reposted by the New York Times here) condemning this story as “baseless, substandard, maligning, defamatory, and based on false accusations.” The company also responded to a Pakistani blog, Pak Tea House, founded by journalist Raza Rumi, that had compiled a number of reactions to the story on social media. According to data compiled by Brandwatch, a technology company that tracks discussions on social media, the New York Times article prompted more than 6,500 responses on Twitter using the hashtag #Axact. A Pak Tea House blogger posted a selection of comments, jokes, and memes from Twitter on the blog and shortly thereafter, Rumi reported that lawyers for Axact had served him with a nine-point legal notice threatening to sue for defamation if he did not “immediately take down the links.” In reaction, Rumi tweeted: “Rather unprecedented that an online outlet @paktea is charged with defamation while it is only presenting reactions on twitter! #bullying.”
Russia stops transit of NATO military cargo to Afghanistan
Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev revoked a decree that allowed for the delivery of NATO military equipment to Afghanistan through Russian territory on Monday (Pajhwok, RT). According to the official document signed by Medvedev, all previous decisions on NATO cargo transit to Afghanistan have now been revoked, including the delivery of military hardware and equipment via rail, motor vehicles, or through Russian airspace. Moscow’s decision to close the transport corridor was made “in connection with the termination of the provisions of United Nations Security Council Resolution 1386,” said the decree. Resolution 1386 was the 2001 U.N. Security Council decision that authorized international forces to operate in Afghanistan. Under the resolution, Russia offered NATO forces passage through its territory to Central Asia, but according to another Security Council Resolution, the provisions of 1386 expired on Dec. 31, 2014.
Afghan police officers sentenced in Farkunda trial
A judge in Afghanistan sentenced 11 police officers on Tuesday to one year in prison for failing to protect a 27-year-old woman named Farkunda from being killed by a mob (Reuters, CNN, Pajhwok). The judge freed eight other officers who were accused of failing to carry out their duties because the allegations lacked evidence. The March lynching of Farkhunda after she was falsely accused of burning a Koran sparked outrage and demonstrations in Kabul to protest religious extremism and violence against women. Earlier this month, the same judge sentenced four men to death after they were convicted of murdering Farkhunda.
Modi criticized on social media for “insensitive comment”
Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s comments regarding Indians migrating to other countries were strongly criticized on social media in India on Tuesday, as one of the top trends on Twitter was the hashtag #ModiInsultsIndia (BBC, Hindustan Times). During his three nation tour to China, Mongolia, and South Korea, Modi, at an event on Saturday in Shanghai, said: “Earlier, you felt ashamed of being born Indian.” At an another event in Seoul on Monday, Modi said: “There was a time when people used to say we don’t know what sins we committed in our past life that we were born in Hindustan [India].” Modi’s comments were aimed at highlighting India’s need to improve its economic infrastructure to reverse the trends of outward migration. However, on social media in India many people responded by making statements regarding their Indian pride and said they had never felt ashamed of being Indian. The reaction was so strong that by Tuesday afternoon, the hashtag #ModiInsultsIndia had been tweeted nearly 40,000 times.
Fighter jet crashes in Assam
One of India’s Air Force Sukhoi-30 MKI fighter jets crashed in Assam on Tuesday afternoon due to a technical fault (Times of India). Both of the pilots from the two seater aircraft ejected from the jet before it crashed and are reported to be safe. However, two men and a woman were injured after being hit by the debris of the plane. Captain Amir Mahajan, the public relations officer at the Department of DefenCe, said that the aircraft had taken off from Air Force base Tezpur in Assam, on a routine mission. He said: “After take off, the aircraft had developed a technical snag and the pilot was forced to abandon the aircraft. Both the pilots ejected. The ejection was safe and the aircraft crashed at 12.30pm in a thick forest near Tezpur. A Court of Inquiry has been ordered to ascertain the cause of the accident.” This is the sixth such crash in the past 15 years.
Hyundai Motor Group considering building a third factory in India
After meeting with the Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi in Seoul on Tuesday, Chung Mong-koo, the chairman of the South Korean giant Hyundai Motor Group, told reporters that the group is considering building a third plant in India (Reuters). The conglomerate Hyundai Motor Group and its sister company Kia Motors Corp make up the fifth largest auto group in the world, and in India, Hyundai commands the second largest market share, just behind Maruti Suzuki. Hyundai already has two factories in Chennai in southern India, with a combined annual capacity of 680,000 vehicles. India’s car market, the world’s 6th largest, is expected to grow rapidly as incomes rise.
–Emily Schneider and Shuja Malik
Edited by Peter Bergen
Noorullah Shirzada/AFP/Getty Images
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