VIF Information Alerts -28th January 2019
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Foreign troops to ‘quit’ Afghanistan in 18 months

Published: The Tribune
28 Jan 2019

Taliban officials said US negotiators on Saturday agreed on a draft peace pact setting out the withdrawal of foreign troops from Afghanistan within 18 months, potentially ending America’s longest war.

The details of the draft were given to Reuters by Taliban sources at the end of six days of talks with US special peace envoy Zalmay Khalilzad in Qatar aimed at ending the war, more than 17 years since American-led forces invaded Afghanistan. It stipulates that troops would leave within 18 months of the agreement being signed. Click here to read..

US scrambles to outrun China in new arms race

Published: The Indian Express
28 Jan 2019

Jeremy Hunt, the British foreign minister, arrived in Washington this past week for a whirlwind of meetings dominated by a critical question: Should Britain risk its relationship with Beijing and agree to the Trump administration’s request to ban Huawei, China’s leading telecommunications producer, from building its next-generation computer and phone networks?

Britain is not the only U.S. ally feeling the heat. In Poland, officials are also under pressure from the United States to bar Huawei from building its fifth generation, or 5G, network. Trump officials suggested that future deployments of U.S. troops —including the prospect of a permanent base labeled “Fort Trump” — could hinge on Poland’s decision. Click here to read..

Japan PM vows to step up China ties but bolster defense

Published: The Hindu
28 Jan 2019

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe pledged on Monday he will further expand his country’s already improving ties with China but said Japan still needs to bolster its defense capability as far as space amid concern about Chinese military activity and uncertainty over North Korea’s denuclearization.

In a policy speech to Parliament, Mr. Abe omitted references to South Korea, which he had routinely mentioned as Japan’s most important neighbor, as Tokyo tries to distance itself amid escalating spats over history and alleged incidents between the two defense forces. Click here to read..

Pakistani experts in New Delhi to inspect hydropower projects

Published: Daily Times
28 Jan 2019

A three-member Pakistani delegation arrived in New Delhi on Sunday to inspect hydropower projects at Chenab river basin under the Indus Waters Treaty. The delegation of experts headed by Pakistan Commissioner for Indus Waters Syed Mehr Ali Shah entered India via the Wagah Border. Other members are Joint Commissioner Usman Ghani and NESPAK Engineer Mehmood Hayat. They will inspect water projects on Chenab, mainly the 1,000MW Pakal Dul and 48MW Lower Kalnai. Mehar Ali Shah and Indian Indus Commissioner Pradeep Kumar Saxena along with their respective aides will undertake the tour in Chenab basin of Jammu and Kashmir. Click here to read..

China increases clout at United Nations as U.S. leadership wanes

Published: The Japan Times
26 Jan 2019

As the United States has increasingly backed away from multilateral leadership and engagement at the United Nations, China in particular has stepped up to fill the vacuum, according to diplomats and insiders, while countries such as Japan are left on uncertain footing. Click here to read..

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