IRS |Institute of Regional Studies

Islamabad

Contemporary Regional Developments in Pakistan

14th April - 19th April
  • Pakistan is gradually reducing its dependence on American military technology and China is filling the gap, says a Financial Times report, which also warns that this shift will have geo-political repercussions as well. (Dawn News, April 19, 2018)
  • At least two Frontier Corps (FC) personnel were martyred and 12 injured in a cross-border skirmish along the Pak-Afghan border late on April 14 night, said a statement by the Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR). Originating from Afghanistan’s Khost province, the attack targeted FC troops conducting routine surveillance near the Laka Teega check-post in Lower Kurram Agency. (Express Tribune, April 15, 2018)
  • Afghan officials handed over the bodies of five martyred personnel of the Frontier Corps as well as an injured soldier to the elders of Kurram Agency on April 16 as talks continued between the two sides to deescalate tension along the border. (Dawn News, April 17, 2018)
  • The Fore¬ign Office (FO) denied an Indian allegation that Pakistan had instigated Sikh pilgrims to agitate over the Khalistan issue and cautioned New Delhi against fanning this controversy. (Dawn News, April 18, 2018)
  • Diamer-Bhasha dam gets go-ahead at last. Pakistan gave a final go-ahead to the construction of Diamer-Bhasha dam at an estimated cost of Rs474 billion aimed at increasing the country’s depleting water storage capacity. The dam will have a 6.4 million acres feet live storage capacity and an installed power capacity of 4,500 megawatt, according to an announcement by the Prime Minister Office. (Dawn News, April 18, 2018)
  • Three Iranian security personnel were killed by militants in an attack along the country’s border with Pakistan on April 17. An Iranian police officer was killed in an ambush on a border post in the city of Mirjaveh in Sistan-Balu¬ch¬estan province, and two soldiers died when their vehicle was hit by an improvised explosive device, Iran’s Revolutionary Guards said. (Dawn news, April 18, 2018)
6th April - 12th April
  • PM Abbasi termed Pak-China friendship as 'bedrock of strategic regional stability' while addressing attendees at the Boao Forum on April 10 at Hainan Island, China. Dubbing both countries as ‘iron brothers’ PM Abbasi viewed that it is natural for Pakistan to take the lead in partnering with China to usher a new era of peace and prosperity through enhanced connectivity.
  • Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi visited Kabul on April 6 to hold discussion with Afghan President Ashraf Ghani regarding fight against militancy, the Afghan-led peace process, bilateral relations and regional connectivity. According to Radio Pakistan, both countries agreed on achieving the common aim of regional security through connectivity. The Afghan president reiterated that the current situation does not benefit anyone and that any concerns in this respect should be addressed through talks, Tolo News reported.
    (Dawn News, April 06, 2018)
  • The United States “fully supports” the peace process that led to Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi’s visit to Kabul and hopes for a “more productive exchange” of views between India and Pakistan as well. These views were shared by Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary for South and Central Asia Alice Wells in an interview to India’s The Hindu newspaper. She acknowledged that Pakistan had taken steps against terrorists but called for more “sustainable and irreversible” actions.
    (Dawn News, April 09, 2018)
  • Pakistan rejected the Afghan allegations that its air force had violated its airspace and carried out raids inside Afghan territory. The tension had come ahead of a visit to Kabul on April 6 by Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi.
    (Dawn News, April 06, 2018) The World Bank confirmed on April 5 that it had received Pakistan’s complaint on the completion of the Kishanganga hydropower plant by India and was working with Islamabad and New Delhi for an amicable resolution of the dispute. Pakistan complained that India has violated a World Bank-mandated pause, placed in 2016, by completing the controversial Kishanganga project.
    (Dawn News, April 06, 2018)

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