VIF Neighbourhood News Digest: May 18, 2020
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PAKISTAN
India may conduct false flag operation, says Imran: DAWN

Prime Minister Imran Khan said on Sunday that Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s regime might conduct a false flag operation against Pakistan by terming the Kashmir freedom movement “terrorism” and accusing Pakistan of backing it. In a series of tweets, PM Khan mentioned relentless oppressive and inhuman tactics the Modi government was pursuing in India-held Kashmir through illegal annexation and brutal use of force. Click here to read....

AFGHANISTAN
Intl Community Welcomes Political Agreement in Afghanistan: TOLO News

After months of political deadlock, Afghanistan’s President Ashraf Ghani and his election rival Abdullah Abdullah on Sunday signed a power-sharing agreement in which Ghani remains in his post and Abdullah takes a leading role in the peace process. Click here to read....

BANGLADESH
Amphan intensifies into very severe cyclonic storm: Dhaka Tribune

Maritime ports of Chittagong, Cox’s bazar, Mongla and Payra advised to keep hoisted local warning signal four. The severe cyclonic storm “Amphan” over the southeast bay and adjoining southwest bay has moved slightly northwards and intensified into a very severe cyclonic storm over the same area. According to the latest bulletin of Bangladesh Meteorological Department (BMD), Amphan came closer to Bangladesh coast by Sunday night. Click here to read....

MYANMAR
Myanmar govt says Northern Alliance not interested in peace: Myanmar Times

The Myanmar government said the Northern Alliance of four ethnic armed groups is not interested in peace because it has rejected all proposals for peace talks. U Zaw Htay, spokesperson of the President Office, said the group – comprised of the Arakan Army (AA), Ta’ang National Liberation Army (TNLA), the Kachin Independence Army (KIA) and the Myanmar National Democratic Alliance Army (MNDAA) – had rejected offers for talks in Myitkyina, Kachin State, and in Kyaingtong, Shan State. Click here to read....

NEPAL
Nepal Tourism Board seeks Rs 20 billion fund to pay furloughed workers: The Kathmandu Post

The Nepal Tourism Board has asked the government to set up a Rs20 billion coronavirus job retention fund to partially pay the salaries of furloughed tourism workers. Lockdown restrictions have shut down the tourism industry, and employers ranging from hotels and restaurants to travel and trekking firms are hard pressed to pay their staff and high-altitude mountaineering guides with no revenues coming in. Click here to read....

BHUTAN
Health ministry to reinforce testing, tracing and treatment: Kuensel

In the wake of increasing positive Covid-19 cases in the country, the health ministry will start conducting periodic testing of high-risk communities and frontline responders along the border areas starting May 18. The ministry will reinforce its three Ts – Testing, Tracing and Treatment strategy with additional measures. Health Minister Dechen Wangmo during a press briefing yesterday said the measures are being implemented following an assessment according to which the border areas were identified as high-risk communities. Click here to read....

SRI LANKA
Sri Lanka’s economic growth bound to go down to -3.5% - Ranil warns: Daily Mirror

Warning that Sri Lanka’s economic growth is bound to go down to -3.5 percent, former Prime Minister and UNP Leader Ranil Wickremesinghe yesterday urged the government to formulate a long term plan to revive the economy battered by Covid-19 pandemic. Click here to read....

CHINA
China unveils guideline on advancing western development in new era: Xinhuanet

China issued a guideline on advancing the development of western regions in new era to promote coordinated regional development on Sunday. Achieving western development in new era is of great practical and profound historical significance to completing the building of a moderately prosperous society in all respects and embarking on a journey to fully build a modern socialist China, according to the document issued by the Communist Party of China Central Committee and the State Council. Click here to read....

Exporters urged to adjust to global demands: China Daily

Though China saw its exports recover in April, driven by the surging shipment of electromechanical, textile and plastic products, trade experts urged the country's export-oriented companies to analyze global market demand as early as possible during the post-pandemic period to stay competitive. Click here to read....

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