VIF Neighborhood News Digest: October 21, 2019
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PAKISTAN

Pakistan summons Indian envoy to protest killing of civilian in LoC ceasefire violation: Dawn
October 21, 2019

The Foreign Office (FO) on Tuesday summoned Indian Deputy High Commissioner Gaurav Ahluwalia to record a strong protest against the "unprovoked ceasefire violations" by Indian forces along the Line of Control (LoC) on October 6 and 7. An elderly woman had died and three other civilians had sustained injuries in the firing in Chirikot sector along the de facto border. "FO Director General (SA & SAARC) Dr Mohammad Faisal summoned the Indian deputy high commissioner again today and condemned the unprovoked ceasefire violations by the Indian occupation forces along the LoC," the FO spokesperson said in a press release.Click here to read...

AFGHANISTAN

Speaker Pelosi, US Congress Delegation, Visits Kabul: Tolo
October 21, 2019

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi led a bipartisan congressional visit to Afghanistan on Sunday, her office said in a statement. Pelosi and the delegation met with President Ashraf Ghani, Chief Executive Abdullah Abdullah, and “briefly compared notes” with Secretary Mark Esper, also in Kabul. The delegation met with General Scott Miller, commander of US and NATO troops in Afghanistan, as well as top diplomats, senior Afghan government officials, and civil society leaders, the statement said. “Our delegation received briefings from Ambassador John Bass and other top diplomats on reconciliation efforts with the Taliban, which has been responsible for violent attacks in Afghanistan,” said Speaker Pelosi’s statement. “We also heard more about the still-pending status of results from the Afghanistan presidential election in September, which we all hope will be available soon.”Click here to read...

BANGLADESH

President Hamid reaches Tokyo: Dhaka Tribune
October 21, 2019

President Abdul Hamid has reached Tokyo on an eight-day official visit to Japan and Singapore. During his stay, he will attend the enthronement ceremony of the new Japanese emperor on Tuesday, said his Press Secretary Md Joynal Abedin, reports UNB. A regular flight of Singapore Airlines carrying the President and his entourage took off from Hazrat Shahjalal International Airport at 1:35pm on Sunday and landed at 6:30am (local time) on Monday. The flight also landed at Singapore Changi International Airport en route to Japan at 7:30pm (local time) on Sunday. Bangladesh Ambassador to Japan Rabab Fatima and Special Assistant to Japanese Foreign Minister Kenjiro Monji received the President at Haneda International Airport.Click here to read...

MYANMAR

EU provides €8 million for small businesses: Myanmar Times
October 21, 2019

The European Union has provided €8 million (K13.67 billion/US$8.93 million) in funding for a project to boost Myanmar’s micro, small and medium enterprises. The project, called ARISE Plus Myanmar, which was launched on Friday, will help the country’s small businesses explore business opportunities in Southeast Asia, the EU and other global markets. The Ministry of Commerce and the International Trade Centre (ITC) will be the project’s main implementing arm. “We will try hard to achieve quality products with the assistance of the project. We will produce high-quality and value-added products,” said Commerce Minister U Than Myint.Click here to read...

SRI LANKA

Utilize resources in an impartial & transparent manner-SL to UN: Daily Mirror
October 21, 2019

Asserting that despite many domestic priorities Sri Lanka has discharged its obligations in paying its assessments to date, the Sri Lanka delegation to the UNGA this week called on the United Nations Secretariat to utilize the available resources received from the Member States in a more effective, impartial and transparent manner, at a time when the Organization is battling its worst financial crisis leading to the implantation of austerity measures and limited operations. Sri Lanka’s delegate, Deputy High Commissioner in Canada Ms. Sithara Khan made this observation at the Fifth Committee of the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) on improving the financial situation of the United Nations on 18 October 2019, in the presence of the President of the General Assembly Tijjani Muhammad-Bande, the Permanent Mission of Sri Lanka to the United Nations - New York, said in a statement.http://www.dailymirror.lk/top_story/Utilize-resources-in-an-impartial-transparent-manner-SL-to-UN/155-176451" target="_blank">Click here to read...

NEPAL

Janajati, Madhesi forces seek to revive identity-based movement: The Kathmandu Post
October 21, 2019

When the constitution was being finalized in Kathmandu in 2015, there were massive protests in the districts along the southern plains. Madhesis, Janajatis and other marginalized communities said they felt further excluded by some of the provisions of the constitution. But on September 20, 2015, the Constituent Assembly promulgated the new constitution regardless. Four years since, identity-based parties and groups that were advocating for inclusive and proportional representation in politics and state bodies received a blow and have failed to mobilize. But now, in a bid to regain lost momentum, Madhesi, Janajati, Adivasi and other groups active in identity politics are working to form an alliance to push for amendments to the constitution.https://kathmandupost.com/politics/2019/10/21/janajati-madhesi-forces-seek-to-revive-identity-based-movement" target="_blank">Click here to read...

BHUTAN

Incident sparks outrage; builds pressure to regulate regional tourism: Kuenselonline
October 21, 2019

The recent incident where an Indian tourist climbed atop a choeten at Dochula has triggered public outcry, and reignited the debate to regulate regional tourism. Many Bhutanese lambasted the tourist for being insensitive and poured their anger on social media. The action was a serious breach of conduct, act of disrespect to the faith and insensitive to the sentiments of the locals, many wrote. The picture of the Indian tourist standing atop one of the 108 Druk Wangyal choetens at Dochula went viral starting October 17 evening. The director general of Tourism Council of Bhutan (TCB), Dorji Dhradhul said that had there been a certified guide such an unfortunate incident would have been avoided.http://www.kuenselonline.com/incident-sparks-outrage-builds-pressure-to-regulate-regional-tourism/" target="_blank">Click here to read...

CHINA

Xi: Internet a joint global responsibility: People’s Daily
October 21, 2019

As the internet celebrates its 50th year, President Xi Jinping is encouraging countries to promote global governance in cyberspace and strive to build a community with a shared future. It is the joint responsibility of the international community to "develop, use and govern" the internet well, so that it can better benefit mankind, Xi said in a congratulatory letter to the sixth World Internet Conference, which opened in Wuzhen, Zhejiang province, on Sunday. Click here to read...

Hong Kong protests: is there a silent majority yearning to speak out but intimidated by violence?: South China Morning Post
October 21, 2019

To all appearances, the civil unrest gripping Hong Kong seems all-pervasive, all-encompassing, giving the impression that almost the entire population could be rising up against the government.Click here to read...

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