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[29 Nov 2016 | No Comment | ]

ISLAMABAD: Finance Minister Ishaq Dar will chair a meeting of the National Finance Commission on Monday (today) — only a third in 20 months — in the absence of at least three provincial finance ministers.
The meeting comes amid provincial dem­ands for more power and resources. The Constitution requires the commission to submit two progress reports every year to parliament. The commission is also required to finalise its biannual report for the period ending June 30, 2016 and deliberate on four studies conducted by expert groups constituted by the 9th NFC …

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[29 Nov 2016 | No Comment | ]

LAHORE – Punjab Chief Minister Shehbaz Sharif yesterday included 11 new ministers in his cabinet, besides appointing four new advisers.
The total number of ministers in the provincial cabinet comes to 31 following the expansion which the analysts believe has been made keeping in view the next general elections.
Besides strengthening party position in some constituencies, the move also aims at preventing the disgruntled elements from joining other parties. Some of the new ministers were reportedly not happy with the leadership for being ignored for long.
Before the new inductions, the provincial cabinet …

India »

[29 Jun 2016 | No Comment | ]

The writer is a former foreign secretary.
Despite Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s Marco Polo diplomacy and Washington’s full-throttle support all around, India’s application for membership in the 48-member Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG) has hit a dead end at the NSG’s latest annual plenary meeting in Seoul.
While not on the group’s agenda, some of India’s overenthusiastic proxies opted to raise the questionable question for a ‘decision’ at this meeting. The decision has come indeed – in the form of a ‘no’. It has, thus, closed the door on India’s NSG membership at …

India »

[29 Jun 2016 | No Comment | ]

The 26th plenary of the Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG) ended in Seoul last week. Prior to the meeting, India’s membership bid had already generated debates. Was China blocking India’s inclusion, as most Indian experts believed? What is the standard for the NSG to include new members? Wang Qun (Wang), Director-General of the Arms Control Department of China’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs, talked with the media about these issues.
It has been reported that at the Seoul plenary, China was blocking India’s membership. What is your comment?
Wang: The NSG has hitherto not …

India »

[29 Jun 2016 | No Comment | ]

The Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG) had a plenary meeting in Seoul last week, and all members participated in a special conference on Thursday evening about the accession of non-participants of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) into the NSG. At least 10 countries, including China, have opposed their bid.India is not a signatory to the NPT, but is the most active applicant to join the NSG. Before the Seoul meeting, the Indian media played up the prospects of its bid. Some even claim that among the 48 members of the NSG, …

India »

[28 Jun 2016 | No Comment | ]

The writer, Brigadier (retd) Feroz Hassan Khan is a professor of security studies at Naval Postgraduate School in Monterey, California
Michael Krepon – a prominent thinker on South Asia’s strategic issues and co-founder of the Stimson Center, a prestigious think tank in Washington DC – spearheaded research on the technological transition from the first to the second nuclear age in an edited volume, The Lure and Pitfalls of MIRVs.
The Stimson Center study examines the history of competition between the superpowers during the Cold War, with a specific focus on the cascading …

India »

[28 Jun 2016 | No Comment | ]

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The writer is a former Pakistan ambassador to the UN.
GIVEN the growing conventional arms imbalance with India, Pakistan’s security is now critically dependent on nuclear deterrence. In the long, difficult struggle to develop this capability, in the face of determined Western opposition, Pakistan’s scientists, almost all its political leaders, and several of its soldiers, played vital roles. No less important was the part played by Pakistan’s diplomats.
It was the foresight of diplomats like Agha Shahi and Iqbal Akhund which held back Pakistan’s leaders from accepting the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty.
Pakistan warned …

India »

[28 Jun 2016 | No Comment | ]

The meeting of the Nuclear Suppliers Group on Friday came to a deadlock on the matter of India’s admission to the exclusive club. The US support of India’s bid fell on deaf ears and Modi’s international tour over the last month bore no fruit either. China first took the position that India’s bid to become a part of the group was not on the agenda. When the issue was raised, the opposition to India’s bid was joined by Turkey, Russia, Brazil, Austria, New Zealand and Ireland. India can no longer …

India »

[28 Jun 2016 | No Comment | ]

India has failed in its attempt to gain entry into the Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG) with the existing membership falling back on what has been called the ‘bedrock’ of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT). The annual meeting of the NSG in Seoul has concluded its plenary with no agreement on any of the countries that are seeking membership but have not signed the NPT — which includes both India and Pakistan. This effectively kicks into the long grass any application for membership by countries that want access to an exclusive …

India »

[28 Jun 2016 | No Comment | ]

The crescendo of noise around India’s bid for entry into the Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG) has come to an abrupt stop.The meeting of the group in Seoul rejected India’s bid in emphatic terms, reiterating that nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) would remain the bedrock of non-proliferation regime and the NSG, effectively ending Pakistan’s bid too. The group hasn’t completely barred the door to the two nation’s entry, but for the time being the question of South Asian entry into the group will have to wait.In hindsight, there was little chance that …