Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif was addressing ground breaking ceremony of Pakistan-China Optical fiber cable project in Gilgit today. Mega project will not only bring economic benefits for the people but also help address the issue of extremism with the provision of job opportunities to the youth. Pak-China Optical Fiber cable project will prove to be a milestone in the development of IT and telecom services. The project will bring 3-G and 4-G services in Gilgit Baltistan. Optical Fiber Cable project, costing 44 million dollars will be completed in two years. Special Communication Organization will lay 820-kilometer long cable from Rawalpindi to Khunjarab. On completion the project will provide an alternate telecommunication route between Pakistan and China and the Central Asian States. The Prime Minister also directs to expand the network of Pakistan-China Optical fiber cable project to Gwadar and other areas of the country. He also announces the construction of a technical training institute in Gilgit to equip the youth of the area with the modern technical education. Initially the government will provide a grant of 100 million rupees for the institute.

India's interceptor missile test upsets balance of power in the region

Pakistan has serious concerns at the Indian interceptor missile test and will take all actions to augment its defense capability, says Foreign Office Spokesperson. Indian action has upset balance of power in the region. Pakistan has informed the United States and members of the conference on disarmament in Geneva about its concerns on the Indian ambitious missile programme. We will be compelled to upgrade our defense capabilities through suitable technologies. Pakistan Foreign Office Spokesperson Nafees Zakriya told the reporters in the weekly press briefing.

Pak- India ties

Normalization of relations between Pakistan and India would require sincere efforts, good faith and commitment from both the countries. We have already conveyed that the dialogue process will not be a concession from one side to the other.

Quadrilateral Coordination Group Meeting

Indiscriminate action is being taken against all the militant groups. Quadrilateral Coordination Group has acknowledged Pakistan's sincere efforts for peace and reconciliation process in Afghanistan. QCG was trying to bring all the Afghan groups to the negotiating table and admitted that restoration of peace in Afghanistan was a joint responsibility of the group.

Pak- China Diplomatic Relations

A number of activities have been scheduled to celebrate 65th anniversary of Pakistan-China diplomatic relationship in a befitting manner.

US values Pakistan’s contribution for peace and stability in the region: Olson   

Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan met US permanent representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan Richard Olson, today. They discussed bilateral ties and overall security situation of the region. Pakistan has concerns on stopping of funds for F-16s. Pakistan desires to expand relations with the United States on the basis of mutual respect. Richard Olson says United States values Pakistan's contributions for peace and stability in the region. 

NA authorizes the Speaker to form a Parliamentary Committee to probe into Panama Papers

National Assembly today adopted a motion authorizing the Speaker to constitute a Parliamentary Committee to prepare Terms of Reference to probe into Panama Papers issue that will be done in consultation with Chairman Senate, Leader of the Opposition and leaders of the parliamentary parties. The motion was moved by Minister for Law and Justice Zahid Hamid. Committee will formulate the TORs and determine the timeline for submission of the report. The committee will be constituted of six nominees of the government and six from the opposition in both the Houses of Parliament. The committee will submit its report to Parliament within two weeks. The National Assembly today unanimously passed "The Constitution (Twenty-second Amendment) Bill, 2016". It was moved by Minister for Law and Justice Zahid Hamid.

Egypt Air flight carrying 66 passengers disappears from radar

Egypt's national airline said that an Egypt Air flight carrying 66 passengers and crew on a flight from Paris to Cairo disappeared from radar over the Mediterranean Sea. Officials with the airline and the Egyptian civil aviation department told Reuters they believed the Airbus A320 had crashed into the sea. Egypt Air says the plane sent an emergency signal, two hours after it disappeared from radar screens. The aircraft was carrying 56 passengers, including one child and two infants, and 10 crew-members. They included 30 Egyptian and 15 French nationals, along with nationals from 10 other countries.

Iraq forces re-take remote western town of Rutba from IS

Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi says Iraqi government forces have regained control of a remote western town from the jihadist group Islamic State (IS). Mr Abadi announced that counter-terrorism troops, backed by tribesmen and US-led coalition air strikes, had raised the Iraqi flag in central Rutba. Coalition spokesman Col Steve Warren said the small town, on the road to Jordan, had "outsized strategic value". Some 200 militants who were based there put up little resistance. Fall of Rutba will have an impact on the economies of both Iraq and Jordan, and also deny IS "a critical support zone".


The Guardian

View on Libya: a nation’s tragedy, a continent’s problem Libyans are the first victims of a dysfunctional state that has neither stabilised nor unified since the overthrow of Muammar Gaddafi in 2011. But Europe can be affected, too. If Libya doesn’t find a way out of its current state of chaos, two things are likely to happen: refugee and migrant movements will pick up again this summer in large numbers across the central Mediterranean (as an alternative to the Aegean route), and Isis will be able to carve out an even larger foothold for itself, from which it will try to launch attacks across the region and beyond. So it is a good thing that more international attention is now being brought on Libya, whose stabilisation was the topic of an international meeting held this week in Vienna. But whether a new focus will bring the right strategy is a different question altogether.


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