Foreign Affairs

Coal Project Is Latest Sign of Growing Pakistan-China RelationshipBy Nafisa Hoodbhoy (Nov 18, 2017) Published in VOA Central News


ISLAMKOT, PAKISTAN — As the car speeds along gleaming blacktop highways in Pakistan’s southern desert of Tharparkar, it is clear the new roads were not built to serve the poor herders and nomads who live in cone-shaped straw homes and subsist on herding sheep and cattle. Indeed, a few decades ago, the Tharparkar desert in Sindh province bordering India was …

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Troubling Turn in Afghan War: Taliban Profits Soar by Making HeroinBy MUJIB MASHAL (OCT. 29, 2017) The New York Times


KABUL, Afghanistan — The labs themselves are simple, tucked into nondescript huts or caves: a couple-dozen empty barrels for mixing, sacks or gallon jugs of precursor chemicals, piles of firewood, a press machine, a generator and a water pump with a long hose to draw from a nearby well. They are heroin refining operations, and the Afghan police and American …

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Pakistan vows cooperation in fight against terrorist groupsBy Pamela Constable and Carol Morello By Pamela Constable and Carol Morello (October 24, 2017) Washington Post

Rex Tillerson, Shahid Khan Abbasi

ISLAMABAD — Pakistan’s prime minister pledged his country’s cooperation in fighting Islamist militants during talks here Tuesday with Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, who has insisted that Pakistan do more to curb support for terrorist groups or face U.S. reprisals. “The U.S. can rest assured that we are strategic partners in the war against terror and that today, Pakistan is …

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Freed Canadian hostage claims Taliban killed infant daughter, raped wife By Reuters (October 14, 2017)


A US-Canadian couple freed in Pakistan this week, nearly five years after being abducted in Afghanistan, returned to Canada on Friday where the husband said one of his children had been murdered and his wife had been raped. American Caitlan Coleman and her Canadian husband, Joshua Boyle, were kidnapped while backpacking in Afghanistan in 2012 by the Taliban-allied Haqqani network. …

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Here’s How Mattis Plans To Win The War In AfghanistanSaagar Enjeti The Daily Caller (Oct 7, 2017)


Secretary of Defense James Mattis offered the most detailed view of President Donald Trump’s strategy to turn the tide of war in Afghanistan Tuesday before the Senate Armed Services Committee. Mattis’s prepared testimony laid out an “R4+S” strategy, which stands for “regionalize, realign, reinforce, reconcile, and sustain.” The strategy hits upon larger themes of Trump’s Aug. 21 address to the …

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Turks being picked up for interrogation in PakistanBy Osman Arslanhan (Oct 1, 2017)

In the early hours of Wednesday, September 27, 2017, Mr. Mesut Kacmaz and his family – Mrs Meral Kacmaz (wife), Ms Huda Nur Kacmaz (17) and Ms Fatma Huma Kacmaz (14) – were abducted from their house located in Wapda Town district of Lahore. Mr Fatih Avcu, a fellow educationist, witnessed the incident and he was arrested by the raid …

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Pakistan, US agree to remain engaged as Abbasi meets vice president Mike PenceAPP/Dawn (Sept 20, 2017)


Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi met US Vice President Mike Pence on the sidelines of the United Nations General Assembly on Tuesday, with the two sides resolving to remain engaged and carry forward the relationship that has been on a downward trajectory since announcement of the US policy for Afghanistan and South Asia. Abbasi’s meeting with VP Pence is the …

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Digging In for Next Decade, U.S. Expands Kabul Security ZoneBy ROD NORDLAND (SEPT. 16, 2017) The New York Times


KABUL, Afghanistan — Soon, American Embassy employees in Kabul will no longer need to take a Chinook helicopter ride to cross the street to a military base less than 100 yards outside the present Green Zone security district. Instead, the boundaries of the Green Zone will be redrawn to include that base, known as the Kabul City Compound, formerly the …

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Trump’s plan prompts ‘paradigm shift’ in foreign policyKamran Yusuf (The Express Tribune)


ISLAMABAD, Sept 8: Pakistan on Thursday hinted at bringing a ‘paradigm shift’ in its foreign policy in view of the fast-changing situation on regional and international fronts, particularly after the new US strategy on Afghanistan and South Asia. Foreign Minister Khawaja Asif, while speaking at a news conference, said the change was necessitated by recent developments “which are perhaps the …

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Donald Trump’s New Policy About Afghanistan, Pakistan & South AsiaBEHIND THE NEWS - Interview with Nafisa Hoodbhoy (Aug 22, 2017)


What are the processes that have led the US Republican president, Donald Trump to enunciate a much tougher policy toward Pakistan? In this interview with Sindh TV, US based journalist Nafisa Hoodbhoy reveals why after 16 years of involvement in Afghanistan, the US administration has decided to enunciate an Afghan policy that includes both Pakistan and India. It explores how …

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U.S. Gives Military Assistance to Pakistan, With Strings AttachedGardiner Harris The New York Times (Aug 30, 2017)


WASHINGTON — The Trump administration notified Congress on Wednesday that it was putting $255 million in military assistance to Pakistan into the equivalent of an escrow account that Islamabad can only access if it does more to crack down on internal terror networks launching attacks on neighboring Afghanistan. The dueling messages sent to Pakistan — promising aid but attaching strings …

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The Empire Stopper By ROD NORDLAND AUG. 29, 2017 ( powers have tried to control Afghanistan for three centuries. It has not gone well for them. Now the U.S. is digging back in.

When the American author James A. Michener went to Afghanistan to research his work of historical fiction, “Caravans,” it was 1955 and there were barely any roads in the country. Yet there were already Americans and Russians there, jockeying for influence. Later, the book’s Afghan protagonist would tell an American diplomat that one day both America and Russia would invade …

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Talks with US suspended in protest, Senators toldIftikhar A. Khan (Dawn Newspaper) Aug 29, 2017

ISLAMABAD: Foreign Minister Khawaja Mohammad Asif said on Monday that Pakistan had suspended talks and bilateral visits with the United States as a mark of protest over the recent anti-Pakistan diatribe by US President Donald Trump. Sources quoted the minister as telling the Senate, which converted itself into a committee prior to its regular session, that Pakistan had taken the …

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Pakistan finds itself on the defensive in Trump’s Afghan war strategyShashank Bengali, Aoun Sahi (LA Times) Aug 22, 2017


It feels like a lifetime ago, but it was just in November, weeks after his election, that then-President-elect Trump was lavishing praise on Pakistan, calling it a “fantastic place … doing amazing work.” But as Trump said in outlining his new strategy in South Asia, things look different from behind a desk in the Oval Office, and his views toward …

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Altaf Hussain meets Khan of Kalat, US Congressman Dana Rohrabacher in

Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) founder Altaf Hussain on Thursday met with United States (US) Congressman Dana Rohrabacher and self-exiled Baloch leader, the Khan of Kalat Mir Suleman Dawood Jan, at the MQM’s London Secretariat, according to a press release issued through the party’s website. The Khan of Kalat joined the latter half of the meeting, which included lunch and lasted …

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Musharraf’s N-technology disclosure embarrassed Pakistan: Foreign OfficeIftikhar A. Khan (Dawn Newspaper) Aug 12, 2017


ISLAMABAD: The disclosure made by retired General Pervez Musharraf in his 2006 autobiography that Dr Abdul Qadeer Khan transferred sensitive nucl¬ear material to North Korea had come as a big embarrassment to the country, an official of the Foreign Office said on Friday at a meeting of the Senate’s Foreign Relations Committee. The disclosure had forced the Foreign Office on …

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Trump seen hardening line toward Pakistan after Afghan war reviewBy Reuters

WASHINGTON, June 20: President Donald Trump’s administration appears ready to harden its approach toward Pakistan to crack down on home-based militants launching attacks in neighbouring Afghanistan, US officials tell Reuters. Potential Trump administration responses being discussed include expanding US drone strikes, redirecting or withholding some aid to Pakistan and perhaps eventually downgrading Pakistan’s status as a major non-NATO ally, the …

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Understanding the China-Pakistan Economic CorridorZamir Ahmed Awan The Express Tribune June 17, 2017


As Chinese philosophy decisively asserts, “you cannot live in a castle made of glass while your neighbour lives in the stone ages”. This maxim offers a stark contrast to the case of the United States, a highly developed state that faces tremendous migration problems from its neighbours Mexico and Puerto Rico due to the existence of a glaring development gap …

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On his 71st birthday, Trump expected a quiet morning and woke up to a shootingTribune Washington Bureau Brian Bennett

WASHINGTON, June 14 — It was supposed to be a quiet morning at the White House as President Donald Trump marked his 71st birthday, with nothing on his public schedule until the late afternoon. But that was shattered by early reports that a shooter had opened fire on Republican lawmakers and staff at a baseball practice across the Potomac River …

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Pakistan faces a diplomatic conundrum over the Gulf crisis (DW) The Saudi-Qatari standoff poses a great diplomatic challenge to Pakistani authorities as they enjoy close economic and geopolitical ties with both Riyadh and Doha. Can Pakistan afford to remain neutral in the conflict?


The Saudi-Qatari standoff poses a great diplomatic challenge to Pakistani authorities as they enjoy close economic and geopolitical ties with both Riyadh and Doha. Can Pakistan afford to remain neutral in the conflict? Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif embarked Monday on a one-day visit to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia along with the country’s army chief Qamar Javed Bajwa and …

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    "A story of a courageous journalist who defied conventional norms during times when very few other women were in this...

    Hassan Abbas
    Author and Quaid-i-Azam Chair Professor

    "Nafisa Hoodbhoy’s detailed reporting helped me look at the complex world of Pakistani politics differently. Hoodbhoy’s proximity to key players...

    Karen Frillmann
    Managing Editor - Newsroom, New York Public Radio

    "It was her fierce independence and commitment to her country that inspired [Hoodbhoy’s] decision to become a newspaper reporter –...

    Frances Stead Sellers
    Deputy National Editor, Health, Science and the Environment, The Washington Post

    "A powerful and courageous voice that represents the best of Pakistan’s emerging journalism… The first insider view of developments in...

    Shuja Nawaz
    Author and Director South Asia Center

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