Morning briefing: India and Pakistan hold NSA-level meeting in Bangkok

GN Staff | December 7, 2015


#india   #pakistan   #NSA   #national security advisor   #bangkok   #barack obama   #venkaiah naidu   #NDA  

In a sudden breakthrough in the stalled Indo-Pak dialogue, the National Security Advisors of the two countries met for four hours in Bangkok on Sunday and discussed terrorism, Jammu and Kashmir, and other bilateral issues and agreed to take forward the "constructive" engagement.
National Security Advisor Ajit Doval and his Pakistani counterpart Nasir Janjua, their foreign secretaries S Jaishankar and Aizaz Ahmad Chaudhry held their marathon meeting in the Thai capital, barely six days after their Prime Ministers Narendra Modi and Nawaz Sharif held a brief meeting in Paris.
The choice of a neutral third country venue for the NSAs meeting may have been prompted by a desire to avoid a repeat of the events that led to the cancellation of a visit by the then NSA Sartaj Aziz to New Delhi for talks.
Pakistan had called-off the visit after New Delhi had made it clear that Aziz would not be allowed to meet Kashmiri separatist leaders in the Indian capital.
Bangkok was chosen because of the "convenience" of both the sides. As Foreign secretary was already in Tokyo in connection with Japanese prime minister Shinzo Abe to India and Pakistani side was also travelling, it was decided to meet in Bangkok due to the "convenience" of the two sides.
The Bangkok meeting also paves the way for a visit by External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj to Islamabad this week to attend a multilateral conference on Afghanistan.

Obama: terror threat against US has entered ‘new phase’

In a rare Oval Office address, President Barack Obama vowed on Sunday night the United States would overcome a new terror threat that seeks to “poison the minds” of people here and around the world, as he sought to reassure Americans shaken by recent attacks in Paris and California.
“I know that after so much war, many Americans are asking whether we are confronted by a cancer that has no immediate cure,” he said, speaking from a lectern in his West Wing office. “The threat from terrorism is real, but we will overcome it,” he declared.
The President’s speech followed Wednesday’s shooting in San Bernardino, California, that killed 14 people and wounded 21. Authorities say a couple carried out the attack and the wife pledged allegiance to the Islamic State and its leader in a Facebook post.
Last week, the terror threat drew even closer for Americans when a couple a 29year-old woman originally from Pakistan and her 28-year-old American-born husband launched an attack on a holiday luncheon in San Bernardino.
“This was an act of terrorism designed to kill innocent people,” he said in the 13-minute address.
The President also reiterated his call for tightening gun laws, saying no matter how effective law enforcement and intelligence are, they can’t identify every would-be shooter. He called it a matter of national security to prevent potential killers from getting guns.
The President implored Americans to not turn against Muslims at home, saying the Islamic State was driven by a desire to spark a war between the West and Islam. Still, he called on Muslims in the US and around the world to take up the cause of fighting extremism.
The spread of radical Islam into American communities, he said, is “a real problem that Muslims most confront without excuse.”

Don't want further probe, Dadri victim's kin tell UP CM
The family members of Dadri lynching victim Mohd Ikhlaq, whose killing generated considerable political heat in the country, on Sunday told Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav that they do not want the probe to continue into the matter while expressing satisfaction over the action taken in the case.
A UP government spokesperson said that the mother, brothers and other kin of Ikhlaq, the resident of Bishada village in Gautam Budh Nagar district whose killing in September sparked nationwide outrage, called on Yadav at his residence in Licknow.
According to the spokesperson, the family members of the victim said they were satisfied with the action taken in the case so far and with the Rs 45 lakh compensation extended to them.
50-year-old Ikhlaq was beaten to death and his 22-year- old son Danish critically injured by a 200-strong mob which barged into their house following rumours that the family had consumed beef. Cow slaughter is banned in UP.

Ministers to meet NDA MPs over breakfast to stem dissent

Concerned over the growing number of dissenting voices within the organisation, the Modi government has asked its Union ministers to call NDA MPs in groups for a breakfast meeting to give them a platform for venting their ire and conveying their grievances to the prime minister, reports Economic Times.
The BJP brass has been worried with the increasing number of its lawmakers going public with their angst against the party, or making controversial statements, that have given fodder to the Opposition to stall Parliament and put the government on the backfoot.
The breakfast meetings will begin from this week itself with senior minister Venkaiah Naidu coordinating the activities. Road and transport minister Nitin Gadkari will host around a dozen MPs from Bihar, while aviation minister A Gajapati Raju and MoS for parliamentary affairs RP Rudy will call a similar number of party MPs from Maharashtra.

Bumper oranges output due to unseasonal rains
Due to unseasonal rains during the summer in Maharashtra there has been a bumper yeild of oranges but the weather anomaly has also disturbed the arrival of grapes and strawberries,
According to the Orange Growers Association of India, yield of Nagpur Mandarin oranges is expected to be thrice last year's output. However, the onset of winter in the north and heavy rains in the south has led to a glut in the market. Meanwhile, growers of the 'mrug bahar' variety of orange, which is harvested between February and April, said output will be lower due to deficient monsoon rainfall. Unseasonal rains have affected the grape crop.

Sensex rallies up on GST hope, Nifty50 reclaims 7,800
The S&P BSE Sensex surged over 100 points in the morning trade on Monday, led by gains in Infosys, ICICI Bank, HDFC Bank, HDFC, and Sun Pharma Ltd. However, at 9.45 am Sensex was 25,696 at around 60 points up and the Nifty50 reclaimed its crucial psychological level of 7,800 was 7807 at 26 points up.
Most other Asian markets traded higher after strong US jobs data strengthened expectations of Fed rate hike later this month. Japan's Nikkei was up 1.5 per cent while the South Korean Kospi traded higher by 0.09 per cent. Hong Kong's Hang Seng index was trading with gains of 0.36 per cent. China's Shanghai Composite was trading flat.

 

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