VIF Neighbourhood News Digest: May 12, 2020
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PAKISTAN
Govt notifies reconstituted commission for minorities: DAWN

The Min­is­try of Religious Affairs and Interfaith Harmony on Mon­day notified the reconstituted National Comm­ission for Minorities and its terms of reference which include ensuring that worship places of non-Muslim communities are preserved and kept in a functional condition. Belonging to a business family from Jamshoro, Chela Ram Kewlani, ex-president of Pakistan Hindu Council and a leader of Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf in Sindh, has been notified as chairman of the new commission. Click here to read....

AFGHANISTAN
Afghan Govt Halts Release of Taliban Prisoners: TOLO News

The Afghan government on Monday temporarily stopped the release of Taliban prisoners, saying the Taliban must bring its total number of released security force members to 200, while so far they have only "freed 105." But following Faisal's announcement, Taliban spokesman Suhail Shaheen said the group released 53 prisoners of the Afghan government on Monday and the day before in Badghis and Faryab. The Afghan government contends that although the Taliban has released a higher number of detainees, not all of them are from Afghan government security forces. Click here to read....

BANGLADESH
148 Bangladeshis return from Indonesia: Dhaka Tribune

A total of 148 Bangladeshi citizens, who were stranded in Indonesia due to the Covid-19 lockdown, have returned home. A chartered flight of Lion Air, carrying the Bangladeshi nationals, landed at Hazrat Shahjalal International Airport (HSIA) in Dhaka at around 12pm, Group Captain AHM Touhid-ul Ahsan, director of the airport, said. Click here to read....

MYANMAR
Authorities to charge, fine those caught not wearing masks while outside: Myanmar Times

The authorities are taking more action to prevent the spread of COVID-19 in Myanmar's busiest states and regions now that most businesses have reopened and more people are out and about. Those who leave the house without wearing a mask will soon be charged under the Prevention and Control of Communicable Disease Law and fined K5000, said NLD Central Information Committee Member U Kyaw Aye Naing on May 11. This regulation will be implemented “soon”. The regional government is now making the necessary arrangements and details will be announced in the coming days, he said. Click here to read....

NEPAL
Nepal makes its position clear on Lipulekh with a diplomatic note to India: The Kathmandu Post

India’s opening of a road link via Lipulekh last week has set in motion a flurry of actions, and in the latest, Nepal on Monday handed over a diplomatic note to Indian Ambassador Vinay Mohan Kwatra. This follows a press statement by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs on Saturday, objecting to India’s inauguration of the road via Lipulekh, a territory that Nepal claims as its own, and a counter-statement by India’s Ministry of External Affairs, claiming “the road follows the pre-existing route used by the pilgrims of the Kailash Mansarovar Yatra.” Click here to read....

BHUTAN
Covid-19 response must address gender-based violence, other rights of women and girls: Kuensel

In a telecast address yesterday, the UNFPA Goodwill Ambassador and RENEW patron, Her Majesty the Gyalyum Sangay Choden Wangchuck, drew attention to the risks and additional burden women or girls and children can face during the Covid-19 pandemic. Her Majesty expressed concerns that the Covid-19 pandemic would negatively impact ongoing support, care and access to health services for women and girls. Click here to read....

SRI LANKA
President instructs to focus on rapid development in main cities: Daily Mirror

President Gotabaya Rajapaksa has instructed the officials to focus on rapid development of several main cities in the country including Colombo, the President's Media Division said. A discussion centered on infrastructure and urban development was held at the Presidential Secretariat yesterday with the participation of Ministry Secretaries, officials of the entities affiliated to the Urban Development Authority, officials of Road Development Authority, Board of Investments and the Ports Authority. The President said that with the resumption of civilian life it is necessary to accelerate the development activities which were interrupted due to the pandemic. Click here to read....

CHINA
Coronavirus: is China prepared to handle an unemployment crisis? : South China Morning Post

The coronavirus pandemic has thrown tens of millions out of work in China, piling pressure on the country’s patchy social welfare network and creating a major policy challenge for Beijing. Click here to read....

China mulls supporting foreign banks' access to domestic fund custody business: People’s Daily

China is mulling over supporting foreign banks to gain access to fund custody service in the Chinese market, in a move to further open up the financial sector, according to a draft revision of fund custody rules issued by the country's top securities regulator. Click here to read....

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