July 21, 2017 - AsiaNet-Pakistan

Archive for July 21st, 2017

Gemalto offers El Corte Inglés store card holders an easy route to Samsung Pay

July 21, 2017 | Education

Spain’s biggest department store  brings the speed and convenience of mobile payment to its about 11 million cardholders Gemalto’s Trusted Service Hub ensures secure, quick and easy registration to Samsung Pay PURE payment application offers Financiera El Corte Inglés* an independent payment eco-system Amsterdam, 21 July 2017 – Gemalto (Euronext NL0000400653 GTO), the world leader […]

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Gemalto’s remote subscription management solution helps Lenovo customers be always connected

July 21, 2017 | Education

Amsterdam, 21 July, 2017 – Gemalto (Euronext NL0000400653 GTO), the world leader in digital security is delivering flexible connectivity for Lenovo smart devices across 160 countries. Lenovo has selected Gemalto as its preferred remote SIM provisioning provider for their Lenovo Connect service. With the On-Demand Connectivity and embedded SIM (eSIM) solution, there is no need […]

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Several Afghan Troops Killed in Counter-Taliban Airstrike

July 21, 2017 | Business

ISLAMABAD, PAKISTAN � A counterinsurgency airstrike Friday in southern Afghanistan killed a at least 12 government forces, including senior officers, sources told VOA.

The friendly fire incident happened in the Gereshk district of Helmand province, where fighting had raged since Taliban insurgents staged a major assault on government outposts a day earlier.

Provincial Governor Hayatullah Hayat told VOA Afghan and U.S. forces were bombing insurgent positions in the district when a newly restored outpost in the Sarband area was hit. He said the airstrike killed two officers and “a number of policemen,” but did not give any other figures.

The Helmand provincial police chief, Abdul Ghafar Safi, later said 12 Afghan National Police personnel were killed and two others wounded. Local media are reporting at least 15 dead.

Hayat said an investigation was under way to determine who was responsible for hitting the outpost.

U.S. military officials confirmed that local security personnel aligned with Afghan government forces had been killed. Officials issued a statement calling the deaths “unfortunate” and pledged an investigation to “determine the specific circumstances that led to this incident.”

The deadly strike came after a Taliban suicide car bomb attack destroyed the same post just before the insurgents assaulted the district Thursday.

The governor said the post was rebuilt and Afghan forces were redeployed just before it was bombed Friday afternoon.

Claims of bomber’s identity

Taliban sources, meanwhile, claimed that one of the three bombers who carried out Thursday’s suicide attack was the son of Hibattullah Akhundzada, the fugitive chief of the Islamist insurgency.

The sources identified the 22-year-old man as Abdul Rahman, saying he drove an explosives-packed Humvee into the Afghan forces’ post in Gereshk.

It was not possible to independently verify the claim, but Taliban sources say Rahman had recorded a video message before going on the suicide mission and it will be released when needed.

The Taliban controls several districts in Helmand, the largest Afghan province and a major poppy-growing region.

Earlier this week, Afghan forces backed by U.S. air power and military advisers recaptured the Nawa district near the provincial capital of Lashkargah, nine months after the Taliban had overrun it.

The restive Afghan province borders Pakistan and Iran.

Source: Voice of America

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Several Afghan Troops Killed in Counter-Taliban Airstrike

July 21, 2017 | Business

ISLAMABAD, PAKISTAN � A counterinsurgency airstrike Friday in southern Afghanistan killed a at least 12 government forces, including senior officers, sources told VOA.

The friendly fire incident happened in the Gereshk district of Helmand province, where fighting had raged since Taliban insurgents staged a major assault on government outposts a day earlier.

Provincial Governor Hayatullah Hayat told VOA Afghan and U.S. forces were bombing insurgent positions in the district when a newly restored outpost in the Sarband area was hit. He said the airstrike killed two officers and “a number of policemen,” but did not give any other figures.

The Helmand provincial police chief, Abdul Ghafar Safi, later said 12 Afghan National Police personnel were killed and two others wounded. Local media are reporting at least 15 dead.

Hayat said an investigation was under way to determine who was responsible for hitting the outpost.

U.S. military officials confirmed that local security personnel aligned with Afghan government forces had been killed. Officials issued a statement calling the deaths “unfortunate” and pledged an investigation to “determine the specific circumstances that led to this incident.”

The deadly strike came after a Taliban suicide car bomb attack destroyed the same post just before the insurgents assaulted the district Thursday.

The governor said the post was rebuilt and Afghan forces were redeployed just before it was bombed Friday afternoon.

Claims of bomber’s identity

Taliban sources, meanwhile, claimed that one of the three bombers who carried out Thursday’s suicide attack was the son of Hibattullah Akhundzada, the fugitive chief of the Islamist insurgency.

The sources identified the 22-year-old man as Abdul Rahman, saying he drove an explosives-packed Humvee into the Afghan forces’ post in Gereshk.

It was not possible to independently verify the claim, but Taliban sources say Rahman had recorded a video message before going on the suicide mission and it will be released when needed.

The Taliban controls several districts in Helmand, the largest Afghan province and a major poppy-growing region.

Earlier this week, Afghan forces backed by U.S. air power and military advisers recaptured the Nawa district near the provincial capital of Lashkargah, nine months after the Taliban had overrun it.

The restive Afghan province borders Pakistan and Iran.

Source: Voice of America

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Trump Taps Veteran Diplomat for Afghan Envoy

July 21, 2017 | Education

STATE DEPARTMENT � President Trump said he intends to nominate John Bass as U.S. ambassador to Afghanistan. The longtime diplomat has been the American ambassador to Turkey since 2014.

In announcing the nomination, a White House statement said over the past decade the ambassador has supported “efforts to mobilize allies and marshal resources to combat terrorism and instability in Iraq, Syria and Southwest Asia.” Bass has served at six U.S. missions overseas since becoming a diplomat in 1988.

He joins Alice Wells, a career Foreign Service Officer (FSO), who was quietly named the acting Special Representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan, late last month.

The two officials arrive at a pivotal time as the Trump administration deliberates its military and diplomatic strategy in Afghanistan, after nearly 17 years of war.

The administration’s decision on whether to send more American troops to the country is not expected for “weeks,” a Pentagon official told VOA Thursday.

Ambassador Wells’ appointment came with little fanfare at a time when there is increasing attention on the expected closure of Office of the Special Representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan (SRAP), which is part of the planned downsizing and restructuring of the State Department.

Critics said it prompted confusion about U.S. diplomacy in the region where nearly 10,000 American troops are deployed.

Wells assumed the duties on June 26, according to the State Department.

Ambassador Wells is ensuring that the department’s approach to Afghanistan and Pakistan is integrated within our broader approach to the region, a State Department spokesperson told VOA.

Source: Voice of America

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Pakistan Court Concludes Sharif’s Corruption Hearing

July 21, 2017 | General, Sports

Pakistan’s Supreme Court concluded hearings Friday in a high-profile corruption case that could unseat Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif and disqualify him from politics.The three-judge panel did not say when a verdict would be announced.In concluding remark…

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Army Fire Kills Kashmir Man During Anti-India Strike

July 21, 2017 | Entertainment

SRINAGAR, INDIA � The Indian army fired at worshippers outside a mosque in disputed Kashmir on Friday, killing one man and injuring another, after some threw rocks, police and residents said.

Police said soldiers on patrol were pelted with rocks near the main mosque in Beerwah town, where worshippers had gathered to offer Friday prayers. A firecracker was hurled toward the soldiers, who mistook the loud noise for a grenade and retaliated, police said in a statement.

Residents, however, said only a few rocks were thrown and none hit any soldier. Witnesses said the soldiers fired indiscriminately after some rocks hit the iron shutters of shops that were closed because of a general strike against Indian rule in Kashmir.

The slain man, a tailor in his mid-20s, was hit by multiple bullets and died on the way to a hospital. The injured man was reported to be in stable condition.

The killing triggered anger and widespread protests in the town. Police fired tear gas, fearing the funeral procession would turn into larger protests in the area as thousands carried the man’s body to a graveyard for burial while chanting slogans against Indian rule.

Some threw rocks at police, who fired shotgun pellets to quell the protest. No one was reported injured.

Shops, businesses and schools were closed in most parts of the region because of the general strike, called by separatists who challenge India’s sovereignty over Kashmir. The separatists also called for a march to the United Nations office in Srinagar, the region’s main city.

Authorities imposed a tight curfew in downtown Srinagar and areas near the U.N. office in anticipation of the march and anti-India protests.

Armed police and paramilitary soldiers in riot gear patrolled streets and blocked roads with razor wire and steel barricades.

Later Friday, scores of people led by a top separatist leader, Mohammed Yasin Malik, defied the security lockdown and tried to hold a protest march in Srinagar. However, police detained Malik and several other activists.

Nuclear-armed rivals India and Pakistan each administer part of Kashmir, but both claim the Himalayan territory in its entirety. Rebel groups have been fighting since 1989 for the Indian-administered portion to become independent or merge with Pakistan. Nearly 70,000 people have been killed in the uprising and the ensuing Indian military crackdown.

Anti-India sentiment runs deep in Kashmir’s mostly Muslim population and most people support the rebels’ cause against Indian rule.

India has accused Pakistan of arming and training the rebels, which Pakistan denies.

Rebel groups have largely been suppressed by Indian forces in recent years and public opposition to Indian rule is now principally expressed through street protests.

Source: Voice of America

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