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Federal Government has started distribution of compensation amount to people of Kurram Agency whose houses have been damaged in terrorism related incidents. According to Sources of FATA Secretariat, cheques of over one hundred million rupees have been distributed among two hundred and eighty seven affected families. A foreign NGO has also given seventy thousand rupees to each affected family besides solar panel.

South Asia: Superseding two senior Lt Gens, Bipin Rawat is new Army Chief; Dhanoa to head Air Force

The only other time the seniormost officer has not been appointed Chief was in 1983, when Lt Gen S K Sinha was overlooked for the post in favour of Gen A S Vaidya. Government has decided to appoint Lt Gen Bipin Rawat, vice chief of army staff, as the next chief of army staff with effect from afternoon of December 31. Government sources said Lt Gen Rawat was found best suited among the Lt Generals to deal with emerging challenges, including cross-border terrorism and proxy war from the west, and the situation in the North-East.

Middle East: Aleppo evacuation: UN Security Council to vote on sending observers

The UN Security Council will vote on Sunday on whether to send observers to the stricken Syrian city of Aleppo. France has proposed that officials should monitor evacuation efforts and report on the protection of civilians. Many residents remain trapped in the city's east in freezing and dangerous conditions, waiting to be rescued. A plan to evacuate civilians collapsed on Friday, but reports say that the two sides are close to reaching a new agreement.

Suicide bomber kills at least 30 soldiers in Yemen's Aden

A suicide bomber has killed at least 30 soldiers and  40 other wounded in the southern port city of Aden in Yemen. Reports say the soldiers were queuing up to receive salaries near a military base when the attacker struck. The bomber immersed himself in the crowd of soldiers at Al-Solban base in Al-Arish district, a military official said. The bombing follows a near identical attack at the base earlier in the week, in which 48 soldiers were killed.

East Asia: China to hand over underwater drone to US in appropriate manner

Chinese Defense Ministry spokesperson Yang Yujun said late Saturday that China has decided to hand over the US underwater drone it captured in its waters to the United States in an appropriate manner. According Yang's statement on the website of the defense ministry, on the afternoon of December 15, a Chinese naval lifeboat located an unidentified device in the waters of the South China Sea. In order to prevent the device from causing harm to the safety of navigation and personnel of passing vessels, the Chinese naval lifeboat verified and examined the device in a professional and responsible manner.

South East Asia: 13 people killed when Indonesian C-130 cargo plane hits mountain

All 13 people on board a Hercules C-130 plane owned by the Indonesian Air Force died after it crashed into a mountain near the town of Wamena in the eastern Papua province not far from the airport today. The rescuers who arrived to the crash site about an hour later found no survivors. The jet reportedly hit a mountain called Lisuwa at about 23:15 GMT, Ahmad Riski Titus, operational director of Indonesia’s Search and Rescue Agency said.

Europe: E.U. Faces Its Next Big Test as France’s Election Looms

The National Front and its leader, Marine Le Pen, who has emerged as a serious contender in France’s presidential race. What Ms. Le Pen wants is to lead France out of the euro currency and out of the bloc.  She has said she would hold a popular referendum, à la Britain, on French membership in the European Union — a test of public will that mainstream French politicians are afraid to have.

Muslim woman dragged by her hijab in shopping area

A Muslim woman was forced to the ground in a busy shopping area in London and dragged along by her hijab by two teenaged men in what authorities said was a hate crime. The British woman in her 20s was walking alone in Chingford, east London, when she was accosted by her attackers. Scotland Yard is now appealing for information on the incident that occurred earlier this week. There has been a rise in hate crime allegations across the UK following the EU referendum.

EU sees Japan free-trade deal in early 2017

The European Union said on Saturday it is close to an agreement with Japan on a free-trade deal that has taken on greater significance after President-elect Donald Trump announced U.S. plans to withdraw from a separate pact with Pacific nations. In a statement, the EU’s chief trade negotiator with Tokyo said a deal was possible by early next year if Japan opens up to EU farm goods and Europe can agree to granting unfettered access to Japanese cars.

Editorials

  1. The case for Exxon's Tillerson as Trump's secretary of state- Japan Today
  2. Arguing the Truth with Trump and Putin- New York Times

Host: Sohaib Bin Noor

Co-Host: Ghulam Murtaza


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