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Hafiz Saeed convicted, sentenced to 5 years in jail by Pakistan court in terror-financing cases

The anti-terrorism court had indicted Saeed and others on December 11 in terror financing case in day-to-day hearing

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Hafiz Saeed

Jama’at-ud-Da’wah (JuD) chief and 26/11 Mumbai attack mastermind Hafiz Saeed has been convicted by a court in Pakistan for five years in terror-financing cases.

The anti-terrorism court in Pakistan, on February 11, accepted Saeed’s plea to club all six terror financing cases against him and his aides and announced the verdict on completion of the trial.

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Guterres urges avoiding actions raising tension on India-China border

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Antonio Guterres

United Nations, May 27 : UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres is watching the rising border tensions between India and China and has urged both countries not to do anything to heighten it.

His spokesperson Stephane Dujarric said on Wednesday: “We are obviously looking at the situation and we would urge all the parties involved to avoid any action that would make the situation more tense.”

Asked at his daily briefing about US President Donald Trump’s offer to “mediate or arbitrate” the dispute between the two Asian giants, he said: “That would be for the parties involved to decide who they would want to mediate. This is not for us to opine.”

Indian and Chinese troops are in a standoff along the Line of Actual Control in the western sector in Ladakh, where China’s People’s Liberation Army has reportedly moved two brigades.

Trump had tweeted on Wednesday, “We have informed both India and China that the United States is ready, willing and able to mediate or arbitrate their now raging border dispute. Thank you!”

This was Trump’s latest attempt to project himself as an international statesman by inserting himself into disputes that India is embroiled in.

He has offered to mediate or arbitrate between India and Pakistan and even claimed that Prime Minister had asked him to.

India has denied that such a request was ever made.

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India

US offers to mediate between China, India on border row

The offer for arbitration came a day after both China and Pakistan issued blatant threats of war on India’s both fronts. The Pakistan Army also initiated an unprovoked ceasefire violation with intense mortar-shelling along the Line of Control (LoC) in the Balakote sector of Poonch district in Jammu & Kashmir, early Tuesday.

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Donald Trump

New Delhi/Washington, May 27 : The US on Wednesday revealed that it has offered to mediate in the ongoing standoff between India and China at the Line of Actual Control (LAC) in the Union Territory of Ladakh.

In his morning tweet, US President Donald Trump said that the White House has “informed both India and China that the United States is ready, willing and able to mediate or arbitrate their now raging border dispute.”

Though China has been aggressive against India at the border in the eastern sector in Sikkim and Arunachal Pradesh, its latest offensive at the Line of Actual Control (LAC) in the western sector in Ladakh has resulted in Indian and Chinese soldiers locked in a face-off in Galwan Valley, Pangong Tso, Demchok and Daulat Beg Oldie.

The offer for arbitration came a day after both China and Pakistan issued blatant threats of war on India’s both fronts. The Pakistan Army also initiated an unprovoked ceasefire violation with intense mortar-shelling along the Line of Control (LoC) in the Balakote sector of Poonch district in Jammu & Kashmir, early Tuesday.

On Tuesday, China’s President Xi Jinping, was quoted by state news agency Xinhua, saying “It is necessary to explore ways of training and preparing for war” and “to step up preparations for armed combat, to flexibly carry out actual combat military training, and to improve our military’s ability to perform military missions.” His statement was preceded by a decision to increase the budget for the Chinese military by 6.6 per cent.

China’s close ally, Pakistan expressed similar views threatening war. Pakistan’s army chief General Qamar Javed Bajwa during his second visit in a month, to the Line of Control (LoC) in Pakistan-occupied Kashmir (PoK) on Sunday, said “Kashmir is a disputed territory and any attempt to challenge disputed status, including any political-cum-military thought related to aggression will be responded with full national resolve and military might,” threatening that “disturbing strategic stability matrix in South Asia can lead to dire consequences”.

“Pakistan Army is fully alive to the threat spectrum and will remain ever ready to perform its part in line with national aspirations,” he warned.

Both China and Pakistan which have occupied portions of the erstwhile state of Jammu & Kashmir have aggressively opposed India’s bifurcation of the state into two Union Territories last year.

Though China has already built heavy infrastructure on the occupied territory, it is now suddenly objecting to the infrastructure development work that India has been carrying out on its side of the LAC.

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Disaster

Global COVID-19 cases cross 5.6 mn: Johns Hopkins University

The other countries with over 10,000 deaths are Italy (32,955), France (28,533), Spain (27,117), and Brazil (24,512).

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COVID-19 cases

Washington, May 27 : The overall number of global coronavirus cases have crossed 5.6 million, while the death toll increased to 350,876, according to the Johns Hopkins University.

As of Wednesday evening, the total number of cases stood at 5,609,079, the University’s Center for Systems Science and Engineering (CSSE) revealed in its latest update.

The US is also reaching a grim milestone of 100,000 COVID-19 deaths.

Currently, the country has 1,681,418 confirmed cases and 98,929 deaths, both tallies accounting for the highest in the world, according to the CSSE.

In terms of cases, Brazil comes in the second place with 391,222 infections.

Meanwhile, the UK ranked second after the US with 37,130 COVID-19 deaths, the highest fatalities in Europe.

The other countries with over 10,000 deaths are Italy (32,955), France (28,533), Spain (27,117), and Brazil (24,512).

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