-Top News Asia News

Lanka: Ranil’s yes to armed forces to maintain public order

The Army, Navy and Air Force have been called out for the maintenance of public order in nearly 30 districts, including capital Colombo….reports Asian Lite News

Amidst looming protests mainly over tax hikes and early elections, Sri Lankan President Ranil Wickremesinghe has called armed forces to maintain public order in a number of selected areas.

An extraordinary gazette notification was issued by the President calling upon the armed forces to maintain public order with effect from March 22.

“By virtue of the powers vested in me by Section 12 of the Public Security Ordinance (Chapter 40), I, Ranil Wickremesinghe, President, do by this order call out with effect from March 22, 2023 all the members of the Armed Forces specified in the First Schedule hereto, for the maintenance of public order in the areas specified in the Second Schedule hereto,” the gazette announced.

The Army, Navy and Air Force have been called out for the maintenance of public order in nearly 30 districts, including capital Colombo.

The areas that the forces have been called included the Western province and former war-torn Northern Province and the territorial water adjacent to the said areas.

Following a much-delayed deal, Sri Lanka received the green light to receive $2.9 billion International Monetary Fund (IMF) conditional bailout to overcome the worst ever financial crisis the country is facing since independence in 1948.

On Tuesday, the global lender announced that island nation would receive the first $330 million IMF tranche but the country was directed to introduce some politically unpopular decision such as severe tax hikes.

On March 15, over 40 professional bodies including doctors and bankers and various public and private trade unions launched a strike against tax hike crippling the country.

Opposition parties also demand to conduct local government election which was earlier scheduled for March 9 but the government delays claiming no money to hold an election.

ALSO READ: IMF funding will lay foundation for a strong economy: Lanka President

-Top News Afghanistan Asia News

It’s time for Pakistan to revisit Afghan policy

The fact that Pakistan is now fighting against the Taliban to safeguard its border regions indicates a more significant policy failure…reports Asian Lite News

Recently, a high-level Pakistani delegation comprising Defence Minister, DG ISI, and Foreign Secretary visited Kabul and held discussions with the Taliban.

While both sides were reticent to discuss the outcomes of the meetings, it is evident that the recent spike in violence constituted the core of the discussions, the Politeia Research Foundation said in a report.
In February, a suicide squad carried out a brazen attack on the Karachi Police Office and killed five people. Earlier, the bombing of a Peshawar mosque, located in a highly secured police headquarters, killed approximately 100 people.

There were also frequent clashes between the Taliban fighters and Pakistan border guards. All these developments point to the deteriorating security situation at the Afghan-Pak border, the Politeia Research Foundation reported.

The Taliban takeover of Afghanistan in August 2021 was supposed to be a significant victory for Pakistan. However, since the takeover, Pakistan lost an estimated 637 security personnel and 314 civilians in 543 terrorist attacks primarily carried out by Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP).

There was a resurgence of TTP after the Taliban released all the terrorists from Afghan jails. After a prolonged Pakistani mediation between the Afghan Taliban and the US, the tables turned with the Taliban mediating peace talks between TTP and Pakistan government, the Politeia Research Foundation reported.

It is a paradox that, despite a prolonged and intense engagement, Pakistan’s Afghan policy lacks a long-term approach and is guided by elusive objectives such as gaining ‘strategic depth’.

Many policymakers in Pakistan, such as Hamid Gul, former Director-General of the Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI), noted that the absence of strategic depth dictated Pakistan’s Afghan policy.

The objective of gaining strategic depth in Afghanistan serves the corporate interest of the Pakistan military and gives it significant influence in defining security policies.

While Pakistan’s leaders may blame the superpowers for entrapping their country in geopolitical conflicts, it should be noted that they sought to define the trajectory of the Great Game in the region. Further, Pakistan’s leadership was keen on leveraging its strategic location and willingly played along with the machinations of the big powers in Afghanistan at enormous economic and human costs. The narrative of strategic depth validated such proactive participation, the Politeia Research Foundation reported.

An elusive search for strategic depth and immediate security considerations coloured Pakistan’s Afghan policy. For example, in the 80s’ Pakistan supported the Mujahidin against the Soviet Union with the help of the US, then helped Mullah Omar to establish the Taliban to fight against the same Mujahidin.

In 2001, Pakistan joined the Americans in War on Terror against the Taliban and subsequently went on to help the Taliban against the US. Pakistan leadership may interpret, with pride, that these shifts indicate an ability to adapt to changing circumstances, the Politeia Research Foundation reported.

However, the fact that Pakistan is now fighting against the Taliban to safeguard its border regions indicates a more significant policy failure.

The skewed security policies of Pakistan are located in its inability to forge an inclusive nationalist framework since its inception. In addition, internal power politics and narrow personal interests of political leadership did not allow inclusive nationalism to flourish.

Subsequently, the military took control of political power and relied on geopolitical events to conceptualise Pakistan’s national identity. After the separation and independence of Bangladesh in 1971, the rhetoric of protecting Pakistan’s territorial integrity became even more prominent.

The issue of the disputed border between Pakistan-Afghanistan (the Durand Line), which stretched from China to Iran, acquired greater salience, the Politeia Research Foundation reported.

The alleged need for a ‘strategic depth’ and consolidating the western border probably constitute the primary objectives that provide context to Pakistan’s Afghan policies. Pakistan’s military leveraged the Cold War and, subsequently, the War on Terror to promote leaders favourable to Islamabad in Afghanistan while outsourcing the bills of such strategies to the West in general and the US in particular.

The dependence on external actors for the financial resources to execute its strategy prompted Pakistan to maintain the facade of cooperation with the US policy in Afghanistan.

Pakistan also sought to build a robust ideological base to legitimise its interventionist policies in Afghanistan. The Islamic identity of Pakistan was radicalised during the Zia regime through strengthening institutional frameworks such as establishing separate Shariat judicial courts and sponsoring thousands of madrasas, which dictated the terms of engagement with Mujahidin and subsequently with the Taliban, the Politeia Research Foundation reported.

Supporting the Jihad against the Soviet Union, providing a safe haven to the Taliban, and being the only Muslim country with nuclear weapons fostered Pakistan’s self-perception as a protectorate of Islam. Moreover, the growing religious radicalism in Pakistan also helped the government to use religious ideology to reach out or create different factions in Afghanistan.

It should be noted that most of the Taliban leadership studied in Haqqani madrasas that were funded by Pakistan Government.

However, Pakistan’s interventionist policies in Afghanistan had severe limitations. First, in the eyes of extremist groups, Pakistan’s establishment is a pawn of the US. The trust and legitimacy of the Pakistan military are fast eroding among various religious groups.

Second, Pakistan’s attempts to harden the Durand Line by fencing, building military posts and regulating the cross-border flow of people have not yielded the anticipated results. The resurgence of TTP clashes on the Durand Line, and the inability to take control of the situation internally suggests that Pakistan still needs to achieve its objectives of consolidating the Durand Line, the Politeia Research Foundation reported.

Third, there is growing discontent among the various ethnic groups, such as the Baluchis and the Pashtuns. However, the persistent economic crisis means that Islamabad does not have space to address disenchantment in minority ethnic groups through development policies.

Fourth, the deterioration of the security situation impacts the already weakened economy by keeping away foreign investors. Further, there are reports that China is worried about the security of BRI projects. To overcome the economic crisis, Pakistani leadership has often resorted to quick fixes, such as external borrowing from the Middle East, China, IMF and others.

Photo taken with mobile phone on Aug. 22, 2021 shows trucks waiting to cross border at a border crossing point between Pakistan and Afghanistan, in southwest Pakistan’s Chaman. (Str/Xinhua/IANS)

However, such borrowings meant growing concerns about the loss of sovereignty.

Despite the willingness to pay for such costly outcomes, Pakistan failed to develop a consensus among the international community to provide substantive economic aid to its friends in Afghanistan.

The takeover of Kabul by the Taliban in August 2021 should have forced Pakistan to rethink its Afghanistan strategy. However, there is no evidence that Islamabad has learnt its lessons. Therefore, international donors must reflect honestly on whether Pakistan can achieve economic growth without addressing regressive religious ideologies and imprudent security frameworks, the Politeia Research Foundation reported.

Given the ungoverned spaces in Pakistan, some wonder whether Afghanistan, in consonance with its territorial claims, will find greater strategic space to its East in the coming years. (ANI)

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-Top News Arab News

Iranian, Saudi FMs agree to meet soon

The two Ministers discussed the issues in a phone call to congratulate each other on the starting of the Muslim fasting month of Ramadan…reports Asian Lite News

Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian and his Saudi counterpart Prince Faisal bin Farhan Al Saud have agreed to meet at the earliest opportunity to prepare the ground for the reopening of embassies and consulate generals between the two countries, the Foreign Ministry in Tehran announced on Thursday.

The two Ministers discussed the issues in a phone call to congratulate each other on the starting of the Muslim fasting month of Ramadan, Xinhua news agency quoted the Ministry as saying.

The Saudi Foreign Minister pointed to the positive achievements of the Beijing meeting, in which the two countries signed an agreement on the normalisation of ties after seven years, and highlighted the necessity of meeting his Iranian counterpart in the near future and the reopening of the embassies.

Meanwhile, Amir-Abdollahian expressed satisfaction with the detente between Tehran and Riyadh, expressing Iran’s readiness to develop and strengthen bilateral relations.

China, Saudi Arabia and Iran on March 10 announced that Riyadh and Tehran had reached a deal that included the agreement to resume diplomatic relations and reopen embassies and missions within two months.

On Sunday, Saudi Arabia’s King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud invited Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi to visit Riyadh.

Following the agreement to restore diplomatic relations, the two nations also announced they will reopen embassies within two months and re-establish trade and security relations.

Saudi Arabia cut ties in January 2016 after demonstrators stormed its embassy in Tehran after Riyadh had executed the prominent Shia Muslim cleric Sheikh Nimr al-Nimr, who was convicted of terror-related offences.

Since then, tensions between the Sunni- and Shia-led neighbours have often been high, with each regarding the other as a threatening power seeking regional dominance.

They have been on opposing sides of several regional conflicts, including the civil wars in Syria and Yemen.

ALSO READ: Saudi no longer willing to provide Pakistan with ‘easy money’

-Top News Asia News USA

Srilekha Palle appointed to Virginia Asian Advisory Board

Palle, a doctor with over 23 years of experience in leadership roles in the healthcare sector, was the Fairfax Republican nominee for Sully District Supervisor in 2019…reports Asian Lite News

Virginia Governor Glenn Youngkin has appointed Indian-American healthcare professional Srilekha Palle to the Virginia Asian Advisory Board (VAAB).

In her new role, Palle will advise and inform the Governor on issues facing the Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) constituents, and advocate for the interests of the community.

She will also advise the Governor on ways to improve economic and cultural links between the Commonwealth and Asian nations, with a focus on the areas of commerce and trade, art and education and general government.

“Today, I am grateful to announce the following administration and board appointments. I am confident that with their help we will be able to strengthen the spirit of Virginia and accomplish great things for our Commonwealth,” Youngkin in a statement.

Palle, a doctor with over 23 years of experience in leadership roles in the healthcare sector, was the Fairfax Republican nominee for Sully District Supervisor in 2019.

She is also a visiting fellow at the Independent Women’s Forum, where she contributes by writing policy papers on current issues healthcare faces, from cost to affordability and price transparency.

Currently she serves in a volunteer capacity as a Rehabilitation Division Head for the Healthcare Council, an organisation of Providers of Care consisting of hospitals and allied healthcare facilities located in the Mid-Atlantic region.

She earned her Doctor of Physical Therapy from Boston University and an MBA, focusing on healthcare administration.

Biden nominates Nisha Biswal as Dy CEO of US finance agency

Indian-origin for US finance agency

US President Joe Biden has announced his intent to nominate Indian-American policy expert Nisha Desai Biswal as Deputy Chief Executive Officer of the US International Development Finance Corporation (DFC).

Biswal is presently the Senior Vice President for International Strategy and Global Initiatives at the US Chamber of Commerce, overseeing the US India Business Council and US Bangladesh Business Council.

She brings over 30 years of experience in US foreign policy and international development programs within the Executive Branch, Congress, and the private sector.

Having served as Assistant Secretary for South and Central Asian Affairs at the US Department of State from 2013 to 2017, Biswal oversaw the US-India strategic partnership during a period of unprecedented cooperation, including the launch of an annual US-India Strategic and Commercial Dialogue.

She also initiated the C5+1 Dialogue with Central Asia and the US-Bangladesh Partnership Dialogue during her tenure as Assistant Secretary.

Prior to that, she was Assistant Administrator for Asia at the US Agency for International Development (USAID), directing and supervising USAID programs and operations across South, Central, and Southeast Asia.

She has also spent over a decade on Capitol Hill, working as Staff Director on the State and Foreign Operations Subcommittee on Appropriations as well as professional staff on the Foreign Affairs Committee in the House of Representatives.

Biswal serves as the Chair of the Advisory Committee on Voluntary Foreign Aid and is on both the Board of the National Democratic Institute and the US Institute of Peace International Advisory Council.

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-Top News COVID-19 USA

WH Covid response team to be disbanded in May

The US remains the worst-hit country in the world with the highest number of Covid-19 cases and deaths….reports Asian Lite News

The White House will disband its Covid-19 response team led by Indian-American physician Ashish Jha, as the public health emergency over the pandemic is set to expire on May 11, officials said.

Under President Joe Biden’s administration, the team was responsible for coordinating the nationwide rollout and distribution of vaccines, treatments and medical supplies, reports CNN.

“As a result of this administration’s historic response to Covid-19, we as a nation are in a safer, better place than we were three years ago.

“Covid no longer disrupts our lives because of investments and our efforts to mitigate its worst impacts,” CNN quoted a senior administration official as saying in a statement.

The official however, noted that Covid is not over and fighting it remains a priority for the administration.

“Transitioning out of the emergency phase is the natural evolution of the Covid response.”

The US remains the worst-hit country in the world with the highest number of Covid-19 cases and deaths.

As of Thursday, it has registered a total of 106,037,022 cases since the pandemic first erupted in early 2020, while the death toll stood at 1,152,525.

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-Top News USA

Biden’s approval declines to near lowest point

The dip in popularity comes as the administration deals with two bank failures and stubbornly high inflation, while trying to project a sense of stability….reports Asian Lite News

President Joe Biden’s approval rating has experienced a slight dip, according to a recent poll by The Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research. The poll indicates that the president’s approval rating is now at 38%, which is close to the lowest point of his presidency.

The dip in popularity comes as the administration deals with two bank failures and stubbornly high inflation, while trying to project a sense of stability.

Over the past few months, there have been fluctuations in support for Biden, with ratings hovering above 40%. However, his approval rating was at 45% in February and 41% in January.

In July 2021, his ratings hit their lowest point, with only 36% of respondents approving of his presidency, as rising costs began to impact US households.

The poll indicates that the public has mixed feelings about Biden, who is expected to announce his reelection bid this summer.

People’s opinions of the president generally do not swing between absolute loyalty and aggressive loathing, which has been a characteristic of the divided politics in recent times.

Washington, Dec. 17 (Xinhua) — U.S. Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell testifies at a hearing before the U.S. Senate Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C., the United States, Dec. 1, 2020. (Al Drago/Pool via Xinhua/IANS)

Fed is undaunted by banking problems

The US Federal Reserve on Wednesday raised interest rate by 25 basis points, which is modest compared to previous hikes aimed at curbing inflation but came amidst uncertainty about the banking system that has taken a hit in the last few weeks triggering fears of a larger problem.

This hike takes the target rate in the 4.75 per cent to 5 per cent range, which is the highest since the start of the recession in September 2007.

The Fed did address concerns about the banking system in a statement. “The US banking system is sound and resilient,” it said. “Recent developments are likely to result in tighter credit conditions for households and businesses and to weigh on economic activity, hiring, and inflation. The extent of these effects is uncertain.”

There was speculation that the Fed might not raise the interest rate at the end of its two-day meeting this week in view of the collapse of the Silicon Valley Bank and trouble at another bank because of rising interest rates, among other reasons. And that it will put on hold its battle against inflation to take stock.

Equally, experts had said, that if the Fed did not hike rates, it would send out an even more dire message: that there was a indeed a problem with the banking system, enough for the central bank to pause anti-inflation interest rate hikes.

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-Top News India News USA

National Security Advisor condemns attack on Indian Consulate

National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan confirmed that the US State Department is in touch with the local law enforcement authorities…reports Asian Lite News

National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan has condemned the attack that took place on Sunday on the Indian Consulate in San Francisco by Khalistani separatist elements.

Sullivan said via Twitter that the US condemns the acts of violence against the Indian Consulate in San Francisco. He further said that the US is committed to the safety and security of Indian diplomats. He confirmed that the US State Department is in touch with the local law enforcement authorities.

“We condemn the acts of violence against the Indian Consulate in San Francisco. We are committed to the safety and security of these facilities and the diplomats who work within them. The State Department is in touch with local law enforcement on next steps in this matter,” Sullivan wrote on Twitter on Tuesday.

Even after the “condemnation”, more than 200 protesters waving Khalistan flags again descended upon the Indian Consulate in San Francisco on Wednesday for a planned demonstration amid a heightened security presence of the San Francisco Police Department (SFDP).

Unlike the violent disorder on Sunday when the Consulate came under attack, the protesters were heavily barricaded across the road with uniformed SFPD officers standing guard and patrolling the area.

The protesters included turbaned men of all ages who chanted pro-Khalistan slogans. They came in from different parts of the Bay area.

The organisers used mics to make anti-India speeches both in English and Punjabi language and attack the Punjab Police for alleged human rights violations.

Meanwhile, White House National Security Council spokesman John Kirby has said vandalism at Indian Consulate in San Francisco is “absolutely unacceptable” and is condemned by the US.

“We certainly condemn that vandalism, it’s absolutely unacceptable. State Department’s diplomatic security service is working with local authorities to properly investigate. The state Department will work on infrastructure perspective to repair the damage,” Kirby said.

US State Department spokesperson told ANI: “The United States condemns the attack against the Indian Consulate and any attack against diplomatic facilities within the United States. We pledge to defend the safety and security of these facilities as well as the diplomats who work within them.

Khalistan supporters have started creating chaos across the world. After vandalism in London, Khalistan supporters attacked Indian Consulate in San Francisco. Videos of supporters breaking the doors and barging into the office surfaced on social media.

Visuals shared online show a huge mob brandishing Khalistan flags mounted on wooden poles, using them to smash glass doors and windows of the consulate building. They raised pro-Khalistan slogans as they broke through makeshift security barriers raised by the city police and installed two Khalistani flags inside the premises.

In a meeting with the US Charge d’Affaires in New Delhi on Monday, India conveyed its strong protest at the vandalisation of the property of the Consulate General of India, San Francisco.

“The US Government was reminded of its basic obligation to protect and secure diplomatic representation. It was asked to take appropriate measures to prevent the recurrence of such incidents. Our Embassy in Washington D.C. also conveyed our concerns to the US State Department along similar lines,” read the Ministry of External Affairs press release. (ANI)

ALSO READ: US expresses solidarity with Uyghur Muslims

-Top News USA

Trump indictment decision pushed back

The 76-year-old Republican would become the first former or sitting president to ever be charged with a crime if the panel eventually votes to indict…reports Asian Lite News

The drama surrounding Donald Trump’s possible indictment over hush money paid to a porn star took a new twist Wednesday, after a New York grand jury failed to convene as expected — pushing back a decision, potentially into next week.

Speculation that a historic indictment of a former president may be imminent has been building ever since Trump himself announced he was expecting to be arrested.

But Wednesday’s grand jury session was called off, unnamed law enforcement officials told multiple US outlets, without giving a reason. The New York Times reported that such interruptions are not unusual.

With barricades outside Trump Tower and police on high alert, New York has been holding its breath over an expected indictment for days — with tension peaking on Tuesday, the day Trump said he would be arrested. He wasn’t.

The jury panel usually meets on Thursdays too but Insider, which broke the news of the canceled meeting, quoted one source as saying it may not gather again this week, meaning the earliest a decision might come is Monday.

The 76-year-old Republican would become the first former or sitting president to ever be charged with a crime if the panel eventually votes to indict.

The unprecedented move would send shockwaves through the 2024 election campaign, in which Trump is running to regain office.

It would also raise the prospect of a former leader of the free world being arrested, booked, fingerprinted and possibly handcuffed.

The Times has reported that Trump favors the idea of being paraded in front of cameras by law enforcement, in what is known as a perp walk. Prosecutor Alvin Bragg likely wants to avoid any spectacle that could rile up Trump’s base.

Bragg formed the grand jury — a citizens’ panel tasked with deciding whether there is a case to answer — in January following his investigation into $130,000 paid to Stormy Daniels in 2016.

Grand juries operate behind closed doors to prevent perjury or witness tampering before trials, making it virtually impossible to follow their proceedings.

A spokesperson for Bragg said that she couldn’t comment “on grand jury matters.” Even once the panel takes a decision, it is unclear when Bragg would announce any charges.

Legal experts have suggested it could take some time before Trump, currently at his Mar-a-Lago resort in Florida, is arraigned before a Manhattan Criminal Court judge.

The payment to Daniels was made weeks before the 2016 election, allegedly to stop her from going public about a liaison she says she had with Trump years earlier.

Trump denies the affair and has called the inquiry a “witch hunt.”

Trump’s ex-lawyer-turned-adversary Michael Cohen, who has testified before the grand jury, says he made the payment on his boss’s behalf and was later reimbursed.

If not properly accounted for, the payment could result in a misdemeanor charge for falsifying business records, experts say.

That might be raised to a felony if the false accounting was intended to cover up a second crime, such as a campaign finance violation, which is punishable by up to four years behind bars.

Analysts say that argument is untested and would be difficult to prove in court. Any jail time is far from certain.

An indictment would begin a lengthy process that could last several months, if not more. The case would face a mountain of legal issues as it moves toward jury selection and pose a security headache for Secret Service agents who protect Trump.

Trump has called for demonstrations if he is charged, fueling fears of unrest similar to the January 6, 2021 riot at the US Capitol, but so far protests have been small and muted.

New York police have erected barricades outside the courthouse and Trump Tower.

Trump is facing several criminal investigations at the state and federal level over possible wrongdoing that threaten his new run at the White House, many more serious than the Manhattan case.

They include his efforts to overturn his 2020 election loss in the state of Georgia, his handling of classified documents, and his possible involvement in the January 6 rioting.

Some observers believe an indictment bodes ill for Trump’s 2024 chances, while others say it could boost his support.

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-Top News USA

US expresses solidarity with Uyghur Muslims

According to rights groups, Uighurs are subjected to mass imprisonment in forced labour camps and banned from expressing their culture…reports Asian Lite News

President Joe Biden has expressed “solidarity” with China’s embattled Uighur minority in a message to Muslims around the world as they celebrate the holy month of Ramadan.

“Together with our partners, the United States stands in solidarity with Muslims who continue to face oppression, including Uighurs in the People’s Republic of China, Rohingya in Burma, and other Muslim communities facing persecution around the world,” Biden said in a statement on Thursday. Myanmar was formerly known as Burma.

“During this sacred time of reflection, the United States also reaffirms our support to Muslim communities suffering hardships and devastation,” Biden said, referring to earthquake victims in Turkey and Syria, and flood victims in Pakistan.

“Today especially, we remember the universal human right to practice, pray, and preach our faiths peacefully and openly.”

Biden’s highlighting of the Uighurs – who the US government says are being subjected to genocide by the Chinese communist authorities – came at a time of strong tension between Washington and Beijing.

According to rights groups, Uighurs are subjected to mass imprisonment in forced labour camps and banned from expressing their culture. Beijing says the ethnic minority is not being repressed and that any security measures in their northwestern region of Xinjiang are a response to a terrorism threat.

China forcing marriages between majority Han Chinese and ethnic minority Uyghurs

Demand to curb human rights abuse

An Uyghur activist has asked China to implement the Concluding Observations of the UN Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination (CERD) and OHCHR to investigate all allegations of human rights violations in the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region.

Zumretay Arkin of the World Uyghur Congress in her intervention during the 52nd Session of the UN Human Rights Council said, “It is with increasing concern that we monitor the situation in the Uyghur Autonomous Region. Since the OHCHR independent assessment, which stated that the violations may amount to crimes against humanity”, a number of UN reports have since been published.”

She added, “We take particular attention to the UN Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination’s decision under its Early Warning and Urgent Action Procedure published on November 23 reminding States of their responsibility to cooperate to bring an end to any serious breaches of human rights obligations. CERD also for the first time referred this matter to the attention of the Special Advisor of the Secretary-General for the Responsibility to Protect.”

The International Labour Organisation recently published its Committee of Experts report reiterating its urgent concerns in relation to Uyghur forced labour. UN Special Procedure mandate-holders have also issued a new communication in February.

More recently, the UN Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights issued its Concluding Observations after China’s review last month, raising a broad range of issues, from the de-extremification policies to reproductive rights.

Zumretay said, “Despite the increased UN reporting, this Council has failed to meaningfully address accountability avenues.”

“We call on the People’s Republic of China to implement the Concluding Observations of the CERD, and OHCHR. We also call on Member States to follow up on the CERD’s Decision,” she told the Council.

The US in its “2022 Country Reports on Human Rights Practices,” raised concern over human rights violations in China, Pakistan and Myanmar.

In Xinjiang, in the People’s Republic of China (PRC), the country report described how genocide and crimes against humanity continued to occur against predominantly Muslim Uyghurs and members of other ethnic and religious minority groups.

“Genocide and crimes against humanity occurred during the year against predominantly Muslim Uyghurs and members of other ethnic and religious minority groups in Xinjiang. These crimes were continuing and included: the arbitrary imprisonment or other severe deprivation of physical liberty of more than one million civilians; forced sterilization, coerced abortions, and more restrictive application of the country’s birth control policies; rape and other forms of sexual and gender-based violence; torture of a large number of those arbitrarily detained; and persecution including forced labour and draconian restrictions on freedom of religion or belief, freedom of expression, and freedom of movement,” read the report.

Mass detentions

China has been witnessing a humanitarian crisis. More than one million Uighur and other Muslim minorities are forcibly held in mass detention camps in the Xinjian province where they face countless human rights abuses from forced labour, coerced sterilisation, and destruction of their culture and religious identity.

Recently, unknown hackers broke into Xinjian police servers, leaking thousands of photographs and documents that provide solid evidence of Chinese government policy targeting the Uighur population.

US slams China

The UN has accused China of “serious human rights violations” in a long-awaited report into allegations of abuse in Xinjiang province.

China had urged the UN not to release the report – with Beijing calling it a “farce” arranged by Western powers.

The report assesses claims of abuse against Uyghur Muslims and other ethnic minorities, which China denies.

But investigators said they found “credible evidence” of torture possibly amounting to “crimes against humanity”.

Human rights groups have been sounding the alarm over what is happening in the north-western province for years, alleging that more than one million Uyghurs had been detained against their will in a large network of what the state calls “re-education camps”.

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-Top News Asia News Politics

Imran alleges another assassination plot against him

In light of this alleged plan, the PTI chairman also issued instructions to his supporters asking them not to provoke the police at any cost….reports Asian Lite News

Former Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan has claimed the police chiefs of Punjab and Islamabad alongside their “handlers” have hatched a conspiracy to kill him as they are “getting serious to assassinate him”.

“The IGs of Punjab and Islamabad have constituted two separate squads, who will join the PTI workers and open fire on the police… to provoke an armed retaliation and eventually reach (inside the house) and assassinate me, in a day or two,” Dawn news quoted the Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) chief as saying in a statement.

“The IGs and handlers have planned a Model Town-type murder,” he alleged.

In light of this alleged plan, the PTI chairman also issued instructions to his supporters asking them not to provoke the police at any cost.

“If the police want to approach me with any warrant or for any other matter, let them approach me directly,” Khan said.

“Even if I will be arrested and they try to take me to jail, I will go to jail happily,” he said, adding that he would never wish any harm on his party workers.

“The incumbent government and its plans to kill me failed and now they have become jittery and are taking extreme measures.

Khan urged the youth to make a promise of standing up against the incumbent government’s oppression even if he’s killed, reports Dawn news.

“Put up a fight until the last ball because the government wants to create an environment of fear so that no one should stand up and question them about their wrongdoing,” the PTI chief explained and added the government should know that the movement would not be stopped.

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