Vast oil & gas reserve discovered in Tando Muhammad Khan: Khaqan

Minister for Petroleum and Natural Resources, Shahid Khaqan Abbasi has said a vastreserve of oil and gas has been discovered in Tando Muhammad Khan.Addressing a news conference in Islamabad, he said 24 million cubic feet of high quality gas per day is …

Minister for Petroleum and Natural Resources, Shahid Khaqan Abbasi has said a vastreserve of oil and gas has been discovered in Tando Muhammad Khan.

Addressing a news conference in Islamabad, he said 24 million cubic feet of high quality gas per day is being extracted from the well.

He said 765 barrel crude oil per day is also being produced from the well.

He said that during the tenure of the incumbent government 101 oil and gas discoveries have so far been made. He said that reserves associated with new discoveries are based on 68 discoveries and remaining 33 discoveries are under evaluation.

The Minister said that the country is marching towards sustainable development under vibrant leadership of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif.

Source: Ministry of Information, Broadcasting and National Heritage

PML-N BELIEVES IN RULE OF LAW AND SUPREMACY OF DEMOCRACY: BARJEES

Minister for Kashmir Affairs and Gilgit-Baltistan Barjees Tahir says PML-N believes in rule of law and supremacy of democracy.He was addressing a press conference along with office bearers of the PML (N) labour wing at Lahore on Saturday.He said that w…

Minister for Kashmir Affairs and Gilgit-Baltistan Barjees Tahir says PML-N believes in rule of law and supremacy of democracy.

He was addressing a press conference along with office bearers of the PML (N) labour wing at Lahore on Saturday.

He said that we had no expectation from the Joint Investigation Team and its report is revenge and not accountability.

Barjees Tahir said our legal team has pointed out forty-three mistakes in the JIT’s report and it’s a conspiracy against PML-N.

The minister said Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif will not resign on the wishes of few individuals.

He said that our all party leaders have reposed confidence in the leadership of Prime Minister Muhammad Nawaz Sharif.

Source: Radio Pakistan

China pledges over $11 million for Iraq’s post-war reconstruction

Baghdad (IINA) � Iraqi President Fuad Masum received on Wednesday a written message from his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping, in which he expressed congratulations on behalf of the government and people of China on liberating the city of Mosul from Daesh terrorist organization.

The Chinese government has decided to provide 80 million Chinese yuan ($11.8 million) in new material aid to the Iraqi government for post-war reconstruction, Jinping said in his letter to Masum.

The People’s Republic of China firmly supports the sovereignty, independence and territorial integrity of Iraq and supports Iraqi efforts to maintain stability and fight terrorism, he added.

The letter was handed over to the Iraqi president in Baghdad by Chinese Ambassador to Iraq Chen Wei Cheng, according to an Iraqi presidential statement.

Source: International Islamic News Agency

Baghdad (IINA) � Iraqi President Fuad Masum received on Wednesday a written message from his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping, in which he expressed congratulations on behalf of the government and people of China on liberating the city of Mosul from Daesh terrorist organization.

The Chinese government has decided to provide 80 million Chinese yuan ($11.8 million) in new material aid to the Iraqi government for post-war reconstruction, Jinping said in his letter to Masum.

The People’s Republic of China firmly supports the sovereignty, independence and territorial integrity of Iraq and supports Iraqi efforts to maintain stability and fight terrorism, he added.

The letter was handed over to the Iraqi president in Baghdad by Chinese Ambassador to Iraq Chen Wei Cheng, according to an Iraqi presidential statement.

Source: International Islamic News Agency

With Eye on China, India, US and Japan Conduct Naval Drills

In a signal of deepening military cooperation between India, the United States and Japan, the three countries have deployed some of their largest warships and submarines in the Indian Ocean for an annual naval exercise that is conducted with an eye on China.

The naval drills have expanded in the last two years amid growing concerns over Chinese maritime assertiveness not just in South China Sea, but also in the Indian Ocean.

The Malabar exercises are the most visible symbol of New Delhi’s strengthening security ties with the United States, which were reaffirmed last month by Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and U.S. President Donald Trump.

Exercise expands

This year’s weeklong maneuvers on the high seas, which began Monday, involve more than 15 warships, including the US nuclear powered aircraft carrier, USS Nimitz, India’s aircraft carrier INS Vikramaditya, and Japan’s largest warship, the JS Izumo.

The focus this year is on anti-submarine warfare.

The exercise has grown in scope and complexity to address the variety of threats to maritime security in the Indo-Asia Pacific, according to a US embassy statement.

In recent months, the Indian Navy has recorded an unusual surge in the number of Chinese naval vessels in the Indian Ocean and tracked at least seven Chinese submarines entering the region since December 2013 according to military observers. They believe this could be muscle flexing by Beijing.

We understand that there are about 13 vessels of different kind, whether for anti-piracy or for surveillance, are currently in the Indian Ocean, says Vijay Sakhuja, Director of the National Maritime Foundation in New Delhi. So it certainly is like the Chinese navy is in your backyard and it is a matter of concern.

Chinese funding and assistance for building ports in Pakistan and Sri Lanka has added to Indian concerns about the forays by Chinese ships.

Beijing wary

Beijing on its part remains suspicious of the trilateral naval engagement, particularly after it expanded to include Japan since 2015, believing that it is an effort to contain its influence.

Ahead of the Malabar exercises this year, Chinese foreign ministry spokesman Geng Shuang said that while China had no objection to normal cooperation between countries, We hope that this kind of relationship and cooperation will not be directed against third country and that it will be conducive to the regional peace and security.”

Sakhuja says the three countries are developing a coordinated approach, to not contain, not even counter, just to be around in the Indian Ocean to just watch how the Chinese navy would be unfolding itself in the coming years.

During Prime Minister Modi’s visit to Washington last month, Trump called their security partnership incredibly important and both countries pledged to expand maritime security cooperation. India has also come increasingly close to Japan in the last two years � during a visit to Tokyo in May. Indian Defense Minister Arun Jaitley said that India is looking to strengthen military cooperation with Japan.

But New Delhi turned down a request by Australia to join the trilateral exercise.

The ships of the three nations streamed into the high seas as a tense standoff between India and China showed no signs of easing in the high Himalaya mountains.

Soldiers from the two countries have been confronting each other since last month, when Indian soldiers obstructed a Chinese road-building project in a plateau disputed between China and Bhutan, a close ally of India. China has repeatedly called on India to withdraw its troops, but so far both sides have refused to back down.

Source: Voice of America

In a signal of deepening military cooperation between India, the United States and Japan, the three countries have deployed some of their largest warships and submarines in the Indian Ocean for an annual naval exercise that is conducted with an eye on China.

The naval drills have expanded in the last two years amid growing concerns over Chinese maritime assertiveness not just in South China Sea, but also in the Indian Ocean.

The Malabar exercises are the most visible symbol of New Delhi’s strengthening security ties with the United States, which were reaffirmed last month by Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and U.S. President Donald Trump.

Exercise expands

This year’s weeklong maneuvers on the high seas, which began Monday, involve more than 15 warships, including the US nuclear powered aircraft carrier, USS Nimitz, India’s aircraft carrier INS Vikramaditya, and Japan’s largest warship, the JS Izumo.

The focus this year is on anti-submarine warfare.

The exercise has grown in scope and complexity to address the variety of threats to maritime security in the Indo-Asia Pacific, according to a US embassy statement.

In recent months, the Indian Navy has recorded an unusual surge in the number of Chinese naval vessels in the Indian Ocean and tracked at least seven Chinese submarines entering the region since December 2013 according to military observers. They believe this could be muscle flexing by Beijing.

We understand that there are about 13 vessels of different kind, whether for anti-piracy or for surveillance, are currently in the Indian Ocean, says Vijay Sakhuja, Director of the National Maritime Foundation in New Delhi. So it certainly is like the Chinese navy is in your backyard and it is a matter of concern.

Chinese funding and assistance for building ports in Pakistan and Sri Lanka has added to Indian concerns about the forays by Chinese ships.

Beijing wary

Beijing on its part remains suspicious of the trilateral naval engagement, particularly after it expanded to include Japan since 2015, believing that it is an effort to contain its influence.

Ahead of the Malabar exercises this year, Chinese foreign ministry spokesman Geng Shuang said that while China had no objection to normal cooperation between countries, We hope that this kind of relationship and cooperation will not be directed against third country and that it will be conducive to the regional peace and security.”

Sakhuja says the three countries are developing a coordinated approach, to not contain, not even counter, just to be around in the Indian Ocean to just watch how the Chinese navy would be unfolding itself in the coming years.

During Prime Minister Modi’s visit to Washington last month, Trump called their security partnership incredibly important and both countries pledged to expand maritime security cooperation. India has also come increasingly close to Japan in the last two years � during a visit to Tokyo in May. Indian Defense Minister Arun Jaitley said that India is looking to strengthen military cooperation with Japan.

But New Delhi turned down a request by Australia to join the trilateral exercise.

The ships of the three nations streamed into the high seas as a tense standoff between India and China showed no signs of easing in the high Himalaya mountains.

Soldiers from the two countries have been confronting each other since last month, when Indian soldiers obstructed a Chinese road-building project in a plateau disputed between China and Bhutan, a close ally of India. China has repeatedly called on India to withdraw its troops, but so far both sides have refused to back down.

Source: Voice of America

With Eye on China, India, US and Japan Conduct Naval Drills

In a signal of deepening military cooperation between India, the United States and Japan, the three countries have deployed some of their largest warships and submarines in the Indian Ocean for an annual naval exercise that is conducted with an eye on China.

The naval drills have expanded in the last two years amid growing concerns over Chinese maritime assertiveness not just in South China Sea, but also in the Indian Ocean.

The Malabar exercises are the most visible symbol of New Delhi’s strengthening security ties with the United States, which were reaffirmed last month by Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and U.S. President Donald Trump.

Exercise expands

This year’s weeklong maneuvers on the high seas, which began Monday, involve more than 15 warships, including the US nuclear powered aircraft carrier, USS Nimitz, India’s aircraft carrier INS Vikramaditya, and Japan’s largest warship, the JS Izumo.

The focus this year is on anti-submarine warfare.

The exercise has grown in scope and complexity to address the variety of threats to maritime security in the Indo-Asia Pacific, according to a US embassy statement.

In recent months, the Indian Navy has recorded an unusual surge in the number of Chinese naval vessels in the Indian Ocean and tracked at least seven Chinese submarines entering the region since December 2013 according to military observers. They believe this could be muscle flexing by Beijing.

We understand that there are about 13 vessels of different kind, whether for anti-piracy or for surveillance, are currently in the Indian Ocean, says Vijay Sakhuja, Director of the National Maritime Foundation in New Delhi. So it certainly is like the Chinese navy is in your backyard and it is a matter of concern.

Chinese funding and assistance for building ports in Pakistan and Sri Lanka has added to Indian concerns about the forays by Chinese ships.

Beijing wary

Beijing on its part remains suspicious of the trilateral naval engagement, particularly after it expanded to include Japan since 2015, believing that it is an effort to contain its influence.

Ahead of the Malabar exercises this year, Chinese foreign ministry spokesman Geng Shuang said that while China had no objection to normal cooperation between countries, We hope that this kind of relationship and cooperation will not be directed against third country and that it will be conducive to the regional peace and security.”

Sakhuja says the three countries are developing a coordinated approach, to not contain, not even counter, just to be around in the Indian Ocean to just watch how the Chinese navy would be unfolding itself in the coming years.

During Prime Minister Modi’s visit to Washington last month, Trump called their security partnership incredibly important and both countries pledged to expand maritime security cooperation. India has also come increasingly close to Japan in the last two years � during a visit to Tokyo in May. Indian Defense Minister Arun Jaitley said that India is looking to strengthen military cooperation with Japan.

But New Delhi turned down a request by Australia to join the trilateral exercise.

The ships of the three nations streamed into the high seas as a tense standoff between India and China showed no signs of easing in the high Himalaya mountains.

Soldiers from the two countries have been confronting each other since last month, when Indian soldiers obstructed a Chinese road-building project in a plateau disputed between China and Bhutan, a close ally of India. China has repeatedly called on India to withdraw its troops, but so far both sides have refused to back down.

Source: Voice of America

In a signal of deepening military cooperation between India, the United States and Japan, the three countries have deployed some of their largest warships and submarines in the Indian Ocean for an annual naval exercise that is conducted with an eye on China.

The naval drills have expanded in the last two years amid growing concerns over Chinese maritime assertiveness not just in South China Sea, but also in the Indian Ocean.

The Malabar exercises are the most visible symbol of New Delhi’s strengthening security ties with the United States, which were reaffirmed last month by Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and U.S. President Donald Trump.

Exercise expands

This year’s weeklong maneuvers on the high seas, which began Monday, involve more than 15 warships, including the US nuclear powered aircraft carrier, USS Nimitz, India’s aircraft carrier INS Vikramaditya, and Japan’s largest warship, the JS Izumo.

The focus this year is on anti-submarine warfare.

The exercise has grown in scope and complexity to address the variety of threats to maritime security in the Indo-Asia Pacific, according to a US embassy statement.

In recent months, the Indian Navy has recorded an unusual surge in the number of Chinese naval vessels in the Indian Ocean and tracked at least seven Chinese submarines entering the region since December 2013 according to military observers. They believe this could be muscle flexing by Beijing.

We understand that there are about 13 vessels of different kind, whether for anti-piracy or for surveillance, are currently in the Indian Ocean, says Vijay Sakhuja, Director of the National Maritime Foundation in New Delhi. So it certainly is like the Chinese navy is in your backyard and it is a matter of concern.

Chinese funding and assistance for building ports in Pakistan and Sri Lanka has added to Indian concerns about the forays by Chinese ships.

Beijing wary

Beijing on its part remains suspicious of the trilateral naval engagement, particularly after it expanded to include Japan since 2015, believing that it is an effort to contain its influence.

Ahead of the Malabar exercises this year, Chinese foreign ministry spokesman Geng Shuang said that while China had no objection to normal cooperation between countries, We hope that this kind of relationship and cooperation will not be directed against third country and that it will be conducive to the regional peace and security.”

Sakhuja says the three countries are developing a coordinated approach, to not contain, not even counter, just to be around in the Indian Ocean to just watch how the Chinese navy would be unfolding itself in the coming years.

During Prime Minister Modi’s visit to Washington last month, Trump called their security partnership incredibly important and both countries pledged to expand maritime security cooperation. India has also come increasingly close to Japan in the last two years � during a visit to Tokyo in May. Indian Defense Minister Arun Jaitley said that India is looking to strengthen military cooperation with Japan.

But New Delhi turned down a request by Australia to join the trilateral exercise.

The ships of the three nations streamed into the high seas as a tense standoff between India and China showed no signs of easing in the high Himalaya mountains.

Soldiers from the two countries have been confronting each other since last month, when Indian soldiers obstructed a Chinese road-building project in a plateau disputed between China and Bhutan, a close ally of India. China has repeatedly called on India to withdraw its troops, but so far both sides have refused to back down.

Source: Voice of America

U.S. Senators Call For New Strategy To Defeat Taliban In Afghanistan

A bipartisan delegation of U.S. senators visiting Afghanistan on July 4 called for a new strategy from the Trump administration to turn the tide against an increasingly strong Taliban insurgency and end the longest U.S. war.The delegation, led by Senat…

A bipartisan delegation of U.S. senators visiting Afghanistan on July 4 called for a new strategy from the Trump administration to turn the tide against an increasingly strong Taliban insurgency and end the longest U.S. war.

The delegation, led by Senate Armed Services Committee Chairman John McCain, was in Kabul on a regional trip that included two days in neighboring Pakistan.

“None of us would say that we are on a course to success here in Afghanistan,” McCain said at a press briefing at NATO’s headquarters in Kabul.

“That needs to change, and quickly,” he said. “The strongest nation on Earth should be able to win this conflict.”

The Pentagon is currently reviewing strategy in Afghanistan, where U.S. troops have been backing the fight against the Taliban for 16 years. It reportedly is considering recommending an increase in troops of 3,000 to 5,000.

But McCain (Republican-Arizona) and other senators suggested that an incremental increase in troops would not be enough. McCain was accompanied by Senators Lindsey Graham (Republican-South Carolina), Elizabeth Warren (Democrat-Massachusetts), Sheldon Whitehouse (Democrat-Rhode Island), and David Perdue (Republican-Georgia).

The Taliban is “not going to negotiate unless they think they are losing,” McCain said. “So we need to win and have the advantage on the battlefield and then enter into a serious negotiation to resolve the conflict.”

McCain made a mark in the last decade by urging a “surge” in U.S. troops to win the war in Iraq before negotiating a peace accord there — a strategy adopted by former President George W. Bush that was credited with success at putting down the insurgency in Iraq at the time.

Senator Lindsey Graham said he would tell U.S. President Donald Trump that 8,600 American troops currently in Afghanistan “will not get the job done” and that more American troops along with more NATO troops should be deployed to “turn stalemate into success.”

Since the exit of most foreign troops in 2014, Afghanistan’s U.S.-backed government has lost ground to the Taliban insurgency. A U.S. report found earlier this year that the Taliban controls or contests control of about 40 percent of the country.

Warren did not join with the others in pushing for more troops. She said she came to get “the view on the ground about what is happening” in Afghanistan.

“We need a strategy in the United States that defines our role in Afghanistan, defines our objective, and explains how we can get from here to there,” Warren said.

Last month, Trump gave Defense Secretary Jim Mattis the authority to set American troop levels in Afghanistan, but as commander in chief Trump must sign off on an overall strategy for the war.

Mattis has said the strategy he will recommend, which will be presented to Trump by mid-July, will take a broader “regional” approach, with no set timetable.

U.S. security officials have privately said the most likely options will be to increase training and air support by 3,000 to 5,000 troops for still-inexperienced Afghan security forces, while also tracking down Al-Qaeda, Islamic State, and other Islamist extremists based in Afghanistan.

The commander of U.S. and NATO forces in Afghanistan, General John Nicholson, has said “several thousand” more foreign troops — mostly trainers — are needed to break a military stalemate with the Taliban.

In 2001, a U.S.-backed military intervention in Afghanistan toppled the Taliban regime, whose ultra-hard-line interpretation of Islamic law banned most women from public life and executed people not seen as sufficiently pious, such as men who had beards not considered long enough.

Copyright (c) 2015. RFE/RL, Inc. Reprinted with the permission of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, 1201 Connecticut Ave NW, Ste 400, Washington DC 20036.

Bahrain, Kazakhstan officials discuss education cooperation

Manama, (IINA) – Bahraini Minister of Education Dr. Majid bin Ali Al-Nuaimi received the Kazakh Ambassador to Saudi Arabia Bakyt Batyrshayev on Monday and discussed areas of cooperation in the fields of education and higher education.According to BNA, …

Manama, (IINA) – Bahraini Minister of Education Dr. Majid bin Ali Al-Nuaimi received the Kazakh Ambassador to Saudi Arabia Bakyt Batyrshayev on Monday and discussed areas of cooperation in the fields of education and higher education.

According to BNA, the minister informed the ambassador about a number of projects implemented by the Kingdom of Bahrain to develop education at local and international levels.

The projects discussed included the UNESCO King Hamad Bin Isa Al-Khalifa Prize for the Use of Information and Communication Technologies, which has achieved outstanding success in encouraging innovations in teaching and learning that leverage technology to improve educational outcomes.

The minister also cited the Bahrain-based UNESCO Regional Center for Information Communication Technology, which aims to serve the ICT needs of the region by building local capacity and capability to produce a home-grown ICT industry fully capable of fulfilling local needs.

Source: International Islamic News Agency

Strong Pakistan-US partnership essential to deal with challenges

Prime Minister Muhammad Nawaz SharifMonday said as longstanding partners and strategic allies, asustained and strong Pakistan-US partnership was essential to dealwith the various challenges confronting the region and beyond.He was talking to a five-mem…

Prime Minister Muhammad Nawaz Sharif

Monday said as longstanding partners and strategic allies, a

sustained and strong Pakistan-US partnership was essential to deal

with the various challenges confronting the region and beyond.

He was talking to a five-member high powered, bipartisan US

Senate delegation led by Senator John McCain, Chairman of the Senate

Armed Services Committee who called on him here at the PM House.

The members of the US delegation included Senators Lindsey

Graham (Republican), Elizbeth Warren (Democrat), Sheldon Whitehouse (Democrat) and David Perdue (Republican).

The Prime Minister was assisted by Minister for Finance Ishaq

Dar, Adviser to Prime Minister on Foreign Affairs Sartaj Aziz,

National Security Adviser Lt. Gen. Nasser Khan Janjua and other

senior officials.

The Prime Minister apprised the delegation about his

Government’s efforts over the last four years to combat terrorism

and that its success could be measured by the markedly improved

security situation in Pakistan.

He also highlighted the economic turnaround that manifested in

enhanced investor interest and confidence in Pakistan.

Prime Minister underscored his government’s commitment to good

neighborly relations and highlighted various initiatives to improve

relations with Afghanistan and India.

On Afghanistan, Prime Minister reaffirmed Pakistan’s

commitment to support all efforts aimed at lasting peace and

stability in Afghanistan.

He said that concerted efforts were needed for a politically negotiated settlement under an Afghan-led, Afghan-owned peace process.

Prime Minister called a strong partnership between the US,

Afghanistan and Pakistan as a prerequisite for achieving sustainable

peace in Afghanistan.

In this regard, he also stressed the importance of the Quadrilateral Coordination Group (QCG) mechanism to facilitate Afghan reconciliation.

With reference to Indian Occupied Jammu and Kashmir, the Prime

Minister expressed serious concern over the gross human rights

violations and brutal repression of unarmed Kashmiris.

He underscored the legitimacy of the Kashmir cause and urged

the world community, especially the United States to play its role

in ending the sufferings of the people of Indian occupied Jammu and

Kashmir.

Senator McCain agreed that continued close cooperation between

the US and Pakistan was essential for securing peace and stability

in the region.

He said the United States of America attached importance to

its relations with Pakistan, which remained a close friend and ally.

The Senators appreciated the contributions and sacrifices made by

Pakistan and the successes achieved in the fight against terrorism.

The Senators also praised the economic turnaround in Pakistan

and stressed the importance of intensifying mutually beneficial

trade and investment cooperation.

Source: Ministry of Information, Broadcasting and National Heritage