China in talks with Baloch militants to secure CPEC projects

China has been quietly holding talks with Baloch militants for more than five years in an effort to protect the $60 billion worth of infrastructure projects it is financing as part of the China-Pakistan... More

Chinese warships enter East Indian Ocean amid Maldives tensions

Eleven Chinese warships sailed into the East Indian Ocean this month, a Chinese news portal said, amid a constitutional crisis in the tiny tropical island chain of the Maldives now under a state of... More

India expects Maldives to end emergency, implement top court order

India on Tuesday (Feb 20) urged the Maldives government against seeking an extension of the state of emergency and resume the political process with immediate effect. The island nation has been embroiled in fresh political... More

Nepal’s ruling party merges into super bloc with Maoists

Nepal's ruling party has merged with a former Maoist rebel group to form a super bloc that experts say will reshape politics after years of turbulence in the Himalayan nation. Officials said Tuesday (Feb 20)... More

Sri Lankan president’s party agrees to stay in unity govt

The Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP) in discussions Monday with President Maithripala Sirisena had agreed to remain within the UNP led coalition government, but had not fully given up hopes of replacing PM Ranil... More

Israel plans post harvest warehouses in Myanmar’s Mandalay

An Israeli company is in talks with the government to build warehouses within a year to help farmers with post-harvest production in Mandalay Region. Avri Bar Zur, chief agronomist at Oz Agribusiness Projects and Investments... More

Australia, US, India and Japan in talks to establish Belt and Road...

Australia, the United States, India and Japan are talking about establishing a joint regional infrastructure scheme as an alternative to China’s multibillion-dollar Belt and Road Initiative in an attempt to counter Beijing’s spreading influence,... More

Chinese consortium becomes BD Stock Exchange’s strategic investor

Dhaka Stock Exchange (DSE) of Bangladesh has decided to sell 25% of its shares to a consortium of the Shanghai Stock Exchange (SSE) and the Shenzhen Stock Exchange (SZSE), considering it a strategic investor. The... More

Indian Army Chief, NSA, FS visited Bhutan, discussed strategic issues

India’s Army Chief General Bipin Rawat, foreign secretary Vijay Gokhale and National Security Adviser Ajit Doval quietly travelled to Bhutan earlier this month on a rare visit during which they held extensive talks with... More

Pak army chief urges US not to blame Pakistan for its failures

Pakistan’s Army Chief Gen Qamar Bajwa on Saturday asked the US to stop blaming Pakistan for its problems in Afghanistan and instead search for the reasons for its failures. He was speaking at the Munich... More

Pakistan’s Punjab govt moves to seize assets of JuD, its welfare wing

Acting swiftly on a notification issued by the federal government, Punjab has started taking over all the moveable and immovable assets of the Jamaatud Dawa (JuD) and the Falah-i-Insaniyat Foundation (FIF) operating in the... More

UK lifts ban on air cargo flights from Dhaka

The United Kingdom has withdrawn its ban on direct cargo flights from Dhaka to London following a significant progress made in meeting a number of important security conditions, reports UNB. Bangladesh’s Civil Aviation and Tourism... More

India, Iran agree to step up efforts to help Afghanistan

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Iranian President Hassan Rouhani agreed on Saturday (Feb 17) to step up efforts to bring stability to war-ravaged Afghanistan. Modi reiterated India's commitment to help Afghanistan become “a peaceful,... More

Repatriation of Afghan refugees key to terror eradication: Gen Qamar

While claiming that Pakistan does not have any organised presence of terror outfits on its soil, army chief General Qamar Javed Bajwa has said Afghan refugees’ repatriation is the key to eradication of terrorism... More

UN hopes for free, fair polls in Bangladesh

United Nations secretary general’s office has expressed its hope that “a climate could be created where free and fair elections could take place,” in Bangladesh. Reacting to a query about whether any action was taken... More

Five Indian soldiers killed in Pak retaliation along LoC

Pakistan Army on Thursday (Feb 15) killed five Indian soldiers along the Line of Control (LoC) in Tatta Pani sector, said the Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR). The retaliation by the Army comes after Indian... More

NATO does not believe in military solution for Afghanistan

NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg says he does not believe that there is a military solution to the Afghan conflict and that the Taliban should realize that they cannot achieve their goals through war. “We... More

US, UK joint efforts to put Pakistan on terror watchlist

Britain has joined the United States in calling on Pakistan to “tackle the threat from terrorist groups” or face being added to a list of countries deemed non-compliant with terrorist financing regulations by the... More

Pakistan slams US intelligence threat report, cites bias

Pakistan has criticized as "extremely unfortunate" a new U.S. report labeling the south Asian country's weapons a continued threat to regional American interests. The annual global threat assessment notes that Pakistan continues to produce and... More

European MPs expect ‘less confrontation’ in BD in coming months

An European Parliamentary delegation on Wednesday (Feb 14) hoped that the political environment in Bangladesh would become ‘less confrontational and hostile’ in the coming months with an inclusive election in place. The delegation urged Bangladesh... More

Any US effort to bully Pakistan will be counterproductive: Ahsan Iqbal

Pakistan’s Interior Minister Ahsan Iqbal has said that any unilateral action by the United States in Pakistan will not only bring the bilateral relations to an irreparable stage but also be counterproductive. During an interview... More


On the Afghan Taliban’s ‘open letter diplomacy’

Writing an open letter is not something that has been done for the first time. In fact, the Afghan Taliban had welcomed the Trump administration into office by writing a letter and urging them of withdrawing from Afghanistan. The letter written this week, however, comes at a time when... More

Myanmar faces increased international pressure

The Myanmar government is desperately trying to deflect the growing campaign at the UN to impose sanctions because of its failure to solve the inter-communal violence that has torn its western region apart and caused nearly a million Myanmar Muslims – who call themselves Rohingyas – to flee to... More

Courage beyond compare

On Feb 13 at about 1210 hours an armoured cash-in-transit (CIT) vehicle of a private security services company was parked outside the Tarnol branch of Meezan Bank in Islamabad to pick up cash amounting to Rs. 14 million from the bank . As the two security guards, Supervisor Muhammad... More

International affairs in time of transparency: The Oxfam syndrome

The Oxfam infection has spread far and wide. Its impact is deeper than just one NGO facing problems about covering up sex abuse in Haiti and as we learn Chad as well.  Now reports are saying that sexual abuse cases are routine in the international development world which till... More

India cautious of its mediation and intervention in Maldives

Despite its reservations about the Abdulla Yameen regime in the Maldives, India does not appear to be responding to the call of the Maldivian opposition leader Mohamed Nasheed to initiate a “military-backed diplomatic initiative” to force Yameen to retract from his drastic actions against the judiciary. According to the Maldivian... More


Khalistan factor casts a shadow over Trudeau visit

Khalistan, the issue that kept India-Canada ties on ice through three decades from 1980, has reappeared as an issue more recently, taking away much of the warmth that was expected during Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s ongoing visit to India. Former diplomats say the seeds of the current tensions were... More

Hasina is no Mujib

Dhaka, the capital of Bangladesh, exudes confidence. I visited Dhaka for the first time in April 1972, within four months of the birth of Bangladesh. Dhaka, then pronounced Dacca, was a small town, desperately trying to accommodate the demands of a sovereign state. There is no doubt that the... More

China will not fall into the ‘Thucydides Trap’ with India

The West’s notions of history and geography between Europe and Asia, are drenched in myriad cultural implications and can be traced back to ‘The Romance of Alexander’. This is a collection of essays mixing truth, epic drama and mythology, composed between the death of Alexander The Great in 323 B.C.,... More

How China and Pakistan could lay the Road to Peace in...

Referred to as an interminable and protracted war, the ongoing US-led war in Afghanistan is becoming a stalemate with no end in sight in the near or long term. Since the violence and bloodshed have been the most common phenomenon in an already war-torn region, the war is perhaps... More



Gorkhaland, Mamata and the Chinese factor

Just a few days ago I warned two young student leaders in Darjeeling of West Bengal, against the violent movement which has started there for a separate Gorkhaland. I told them in no way should they support this demand. This has multifarious geo-political risks. If a Gorkhaland state is... More