News and Views

India — going ‘ballistic’?

The Express Tribune | Muhammad Ali Ehsan  Reports coming from India suggest that on May 15 it successfully tested a locally-designed supersonic anti-ballistic missile. Considering the no-first use nuclear doctrine that India follows and Pakistan does not, the lack of an anti-ballistic missile technology was a gap in Indian security. But has that gap been filled now by the test-firing of the missile? If not, how long will it take for India to build up an anti-missile defence shield? What are the implications and strategic effects of this renewed Indian interest in the development, induction and expansion of missile systems in its armed forces? And how is Pakistan likely to respond to this Indian development?

Read MorePosted Date: May 21, 2016  Last Updated at 0800 PST

Indian N-missile ambitions threaten 32 littoral states: Aziz

DAWN | BAQIR SAJJAD SYED  ISLAMABAD: India’s nuclear-armed missiles deployed on nuclear-powered submarines pose a threat to the maritime security of the Indian Ocean Region’s (IOR) 32 littoral states, besides upsetting the strategic balance in South Asia, the Senate was told on Thursday.
Making a policy statement on the deployment of nuclear-armed missiles on submarines in the Indian Ocean, Adviser to the Prime Minister on Foreign Affairs Sartaj Aziz said Pakistan was considering a proposal for tabling a resolution at the UN General Assembly session later this year, which would call for making the Indian Ocean a nuclear-free zone.

Read MorePosted Date: May 20, 2016  Last Updated at 0642 PST

Pakistan compelled to upgrade defence capabilities: FO

Daily Times | Online  ISLAMABAD: Pakistan on Thursday voiced concerns over India’s test-fire of supersonic interceptor missile and said it would “take all necessary measures to augment the country’s defence capabilities”.
“We are not oblivious to our defence needs and we will be compelled to upgrade our defence capabilities through suitable technologies,” the Foreign Office spokesman said in a weekly press briefing here at the Foreign Office.

Read MorePosted Date: May 20, 2016  Last Updated at 0800 PST

Pakistan always supports peace in Afghanistan: NSA

Daily Times | Staff Report  ISLAMABAD: Lt. Gen (Retd) Nasir Khan Janjua, National Security Adviser said, war can never be a road to peace and Pakistan was the only country which had always stood next to Afghanistan and its people for peace and stability.
He expressed these views at the closing ceremony of the Islamabad Policy Research Institute (IPRI) and German organisation Hanns Seidel Foundation (HSF’s) joint two-day international conference on ‘Evolving Situation in Afghanistan: Role of Major powers and Regional Countries.

Read MorePosted Date: May 20, 2016  Last Updated at 1302 PST

‘Modi to attend SAARC conference in Islamabad’

The News | Web Desk  LAHORE: Emphasizing the importance of reinitiating the stalled dialogue process between India and Pakistan, Indian High Commissioner Gautam Bambawale on Thursday said Prime Minister Narendra Modi will attend the upcoming South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) conference in Islamabad.
Speaking exclusively to Geo News after arriving in Lahore on a two-day visit, he said he was unable to give an exact time-frame of the bilateral talks however emphasized on reinitiating the dialogue process before the 19th SAARC conference, scheduled to be held in Islamabad and Murree in November.

Read MorePosted Date: May 20, 2016  Last Updated at 0800 PST

FO briefing: Islamabad welcomes Kabul-HIA peace deal

The Express Tribune | Our Correspondent  ISLAMABAD: Islamabad has welcomed the preliminary peace deal signed between Kabul and the Hizb-e-Islami Afghanistan (HIA) militant group, saying negotiations are the only way to bring peace and stability to the war-ravaged country.
“Pakistan welcomes any and every effort, which brings the militant groups to the negotiation table,” Foreign Office (FO) spokesperson Nafees Zakaria said at his weekly news briefing.

Read MorePosted Date: May 20, 2016  Last Updated at 0800 PST

Pakistan calls for justice to Samjhauta blast victims

DNA News | DNA CORRESPONDENT  Pakistan on Thursday accused India of trying to exonerate individuals, involved in Samjhauta Express attack, that resulted in the killing of 42 Pakistan citizens. Pakistan Foreign Office spokesperson Mohammed Nafees Zakaria said the issue had also figured during the meeting between the two foreign secretaries last month in New Delhi. "It is only through fair, timely and judicious administration of justice that any society can sustain itself as a respected member of global community," he said, when asked about clean chit to Sadhvi Pragya and others in Malegaon and other terror related cases.

Read MorePosted Date: May 20, 2016  Last Updated at 0710 PST

A nuclearised Indian Ocean

The News | Ali Sarwar Naqvi  While the international strategic community continues to be preoccupied with land-based nuclear developments in the South Asian region, little attention is being paid to the fearsome prospect of the nuclearisation of the Indian Ocean, and the adjoining waters of the Arabian Sea and the Bay of Bengal.
The induction of nuclear weapons and platforms in the Indian Ocean by any one state of the 32 littoral states around it will have the consequence of jeopardising the security of all the others. As the state undertaking this enterprise is India, it can directly affect the security dilemma of Pakistan, which is already concerned about India’s land-based nuclear and missile capabilities.

Read MorePosted Date: May 20, 2016  Last Updated at 0800 PST

Pakistan may get F-16s by July: experts

DAWN | ANWAR IQBAL  WASHINGTON: Defence experts in the US capital believe that Pakistan may get the disputed F-16s by the end of July, despite a strong opposition from American lawmakers.
The experts, who spoke to Dawn, said that the Obama administration would ultimately succeed in convincing Congress that it was in America’s interest to enable Pakistan to buy the aircraft.

Read MorePosted Date: May 20, 2016  Last Updated at 0735 PST

Pakistan Says ‘Seriously Concerned’ by India’s Missile Tests

The New York Times | REUTERS  ISLAMABAD — Pakistan is "seriously concerned" by India's recent test of anti-ballistic missiles which media reports say could intercept incoming nuclear weapons, a senior foreign ministry official said on Thursday, warning Pakistan would upgrade its defences.
India's defence and foreign ministries did not respond to requests for comment and the defence ministry has not stated whether any test was conducted. India has not announced these tests in the past.

Read MorePosted Date: May 19, 2016  Last Updated at 0206 EDT

China’s naval chief lauds Pakistan’s pivotal role

The Express Tribune | Our Correspondent  KARACHI: The head of China’s navy on Wednesday acknowledged Pakistan Navy’s role in ensuring maritime security and stability in the region.
“Pakistan, as a responsible state, is playing a pivotal role for maritime security and stability in the region, which has greatly helped in shaping a secure environment for freedom of navigation in the region,” Commander of the People’s Liberation Army Navy (PLAN), Admiral Wu Shengli, said in a meeting with Chief of Naval Staff Admiral Muhammad Zakaullah.

Read MorePosted Date: May 19, 2016  Last Updated at 0800 PST

House Seeks to Tighten Restrictions on Pakistan Aid

The New York Times | REUTERS  WASHINGTON — U.S. lawmakers are looking to use a defense policy bill to increase restrictions on military aid for Pakistan, expressing frustration with what they see as Islamabad's failure to crack down on Afghanistan's militant Haqqani network.
The $602 billion National Defense Authorization Act, or NDAA, passed by the House of Representatives late on Wednesday would block $450 million in aid to Islamabad unless it does more to fight the network, which lawmakers see as a major threat to U.S. forces in Afghanistan.

Read MorePosted Date: May 19, 2016  Last Updated at 0624 EDT