PM Nawaz Sharif Saddened Over Orlando Terror Incident  

Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif has expressed his sadness over the gruesome act of terrorism in Florida, United States in which fifty people killed. In a statement, the Prime Minister says this was against every principle of pluralism, tolerance and humanity. This does not represent the will of a vast majority of Muslims. It is just another representation of a cancer of radicalization–one that we promise to fight every day of our lives. Meanwhile, United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has condemned the dead list Florida incident in which 50 people were killed and dozens injured. He extended his deepest condolences to the families of the victims and expressed his solidarity with the Government and people of the United States. US President Barack Obama has also expressed heartbreak at the "horrific massacre" of 50 people in Orlando, branding it an act of terror and hate. President Obama ordered flags at half-staff as an act of mourning.

Senate Resumes Its Session in Islamabad

The Senate resumed its session in Islamabad today after two days break with Mian Raza Rabbani in the chair. Convener Special Committee on China-Pakistan Economic Corridor Taj Haider laid second Interim report of the committee on CPEC in the house. Minister of State for Interior Muhammad Balighur Rehman says 22 additional wings of Civil Armed Forces will be raised to ensure security of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor Project. The government will provide all possible resources to further enhance the capacity of these forces. The budget of the Senate for the next financial year and the expenditures incurred during the previous four financial years were also laid before the House.

“Pakistan's credentials stronger than India for NSG membership”: Sartaj Aziz

Adviser to Prime Minister on Foreign Affairs Sartaj Aziz says Pakistan's credentials for the membership of Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG) are stronger than India's if the 48-nation cartel agrees to form a uniform criterion for non-NPT states. Pakistan has diplomatically engaged numerous countries over the criteria-based approach for non-NPT countries.

Pakistan has gradually gathered support for the criteria based approach. "Last week, I telephoned the foreign ministers of Russia, New Zealand and South Korea, who will in future head the NSG, and our viewpoint was that they should support the criteria-based approach, and we have gathered support for it, China was already supporting it" said the adviser to PM. Due to Pakistan's efforts and its strong credentials, if India gains entry into the club, Pakistan will not be left behind. US has formed a policy to 'build up India' as "their entire attention is towards containing the Islamic world and China".

"We cannot question them but we repeatedly tell them that you (US) are a sovereign country and can maintain any level of relations with any country, but if you increase the strategic and conventional imbalance in South Asia, our problems will increase," said the foreign affairs adviser while referring to US support for India's inclusion in NSG

"ONE BELT-ONE ROAD" to bridge economic, cultural gaps: Dastgir

Minister of Commerce Khurram Dastgir Khan says that the visionary initiative of  “One Belt One Road,” aims to revive the fabled Silk Road, will bridge social, economic and cultural gaps within regions in an open and inclusive manner. Says, this in his keynote speech at the China-South Asia Business Forum organized on the sidelines of the 4th China-South Asia Expo in Kunming, the capital of Yunnan Province in Southwest China.

Stage had been set for an unprecedented economic integration between China and South Asian countries in the days to come, which would help fight the menace of poverty, unemployment, illiteracy, malnutrition and disease in South Asia.  It will also offer people a better standard of life and economic opportunities.

Saudi Deputy Crown Prince Heads to US

Saudi Arabia’s deputy crown prince is set to leave for the United States on an official visit today. In response to an invitation by the United States government, Prince Mohammed bin Salman will meet with a number of officials to discuss the strengthening of bilateral relations between the two countries, and discuss issues of mutual interest and regional issues. He will be in Washington DC till June 16 and will then travel to New York for meetings with financial firms. The deputy crown prince will also discuss with high-level US officials regional issues, especially Yemen, Syria, Iraq, Libya and Gulf security.

Iraqi Army Secures First Safe Exit Route for Civilians to Leave Fallujah

In Iraqi, army had secured the first safe exit route for civilians to leave Islamic State's besieged stronghold Fallujah. Joint Operation Command spokesman Brigadier-General Yahya Rasool said about 4,000 people had fled the city over the past 24 hours through the new exit route, known as al-Salam Junction. The army also launched a fresh advance in the direction of the northern city of Mosul. The assaults by the Iraqi army are taking place at the same time as advances against Islamic State by U.S.-backed   government forces in Syria.

News in Brief

  • Punjab Budget for next fiscal year will be presented in Provincial Assembly today at 1600 hours.
  • Khyber Pakhtun khwa government would present provincial budget with total outlay of more than four hundred eighty-eight billion rupees for fiscal year 2016-17 tomorrow.
  • Earlier, a soldier of Pakistani security forces got wounded following unprovoked firing by Afghan security forces across the border at Torkham.
  • Karachi police have arrested thirty four suspects including drug peddlers and criminals in a targeted operation in Manghopir area of the city.
  • German Chancellor Angela Merkel met China's Premier Li Keqiang and President Xi Jinping in Beijing today.
  • The United States warned against the risk of a nuclear conflict in South Asia, as China on Sunday called for more talks on India’s application seeking membership of an exclusive club of nuclear suppliers.


Khaleej Times

"Sirte Retake Will Help Unite Libya"

The retaking of Sirte from Daesh is no less than a strategic breakthrough. It is a shot in the arm for the Libyan authorities, who have been at odds while running a fragmented administration. It will help further the process of not only political reconciliation between various stakeholders but also weaken the resolve of militants who had been in control of important installations for long. Sirte was acting as a fort for Daesh in Libya, and was of crucial importance after their strongholds in Iraq and Syria. While the anti-Daesh forces fighting in Sirte are largely made up of militia brigades from Misrata, Libya's third largest city, it is feared that a new episode of infighting could break out for the control of local resources and seaport. The Libyan security forces do not enjoy an edge, and this is where the problem lies. Although British and American forces are known to have been advising and training forces in Libya, it is little known as to what is their capability, and how effectively they can sideline the militias that are all around in the strife-torn state.



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