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India’s right move to allow Pathankot probe team visit: Daily

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India has made the right move to allow the Pathankot terror attack probe team’s visit, said a Pakistani daily on Wednesday.

An editorial “Pathankot developments” in the Daily Times said that Adviser to Prime Minister (PM) on Foreign Affairs Sartaj Aziz has elucidated on the progress of investigations into the Pathankot attack, which took place on the Indian airbase, on January 2, leaving seven dead and several injured.

After a First Investigation Report (FIR) was registered on Friday by Punjab police’s counter-terrorism department, Indian Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar had said that it was an insufficient step and that Pakistan should take legal action to India’s satisfaction.

Aziz asserted that the FIR could not have been taken on the basis of inadequate evidence, especially considering it is a cross-border terrorist attack, which is why it had been delayed. He said that the FIR had enabled Pakistan to visit the Pathankot airbase.

“Contrary to the unequivocal refusal by the Indian defence minister earlier to allow Pakistan’s Special Investigation Team (SIT) to visit the airbase, Indian authorities have now agreed to the visit. Aziz stated that the visit to the crime scene would only aid the expeditious investigation,” said the daily.

Pakistan-based Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM) group has been named by India as the principal instigator of the attack and its chief, Masood Azhar, the mastermind.

Aziz confirmed that “Azhar and a few other JeM operatives were under ‘protective custody’ and the moment evidence became available action would be taken against them”. He also revealed that one of the mobile numbers provided by India had been found to be associated to JeM’s headquarters, which have been sealed by the authorities.

The editorial noted that before the Pathankot attack, “there was a clear thawing of tensions between Pakistan and India, made possible by the growing amity of the premiers”.

“However, unfortunately, it appears from statements by officials that India may well be going back to relying on suspicions as it did after the Mumbai attacks, which resulted in an impasse.

“While India has made the right move to allow the SIT’s visit, there is a need for mutual cognisance that to overcome the hurdles placed in the way to a diplomatic endeavour by the spoilers, there is a need for more definitive action,” it added.

The daily observed that the “onus is on Pakistan to ensure that investigations are taken to their logical end and not bogged down by political to and fro in order to maintain the possibility of dialogue”.

“Indian authorities too need to tread with caution, realising that, ultimately, a solution can only come from dialogue, which will not be effective if the political atmosphere is soured by the disobliging demeanour of any party.”

WEFORNEWS Bureau

Disaster

6.8-magnitude quake hits Indonesia, no tsunami alert

Indonesia is frequently hit by earthquakes as it sits on a vulnerable quake-impacted zone called “the Pacific Ring of Fire”.

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Earthquake Strong

Jakarta, June 4 : An earthquake measuring 6.8 on the Richter scale jolted Indonesia”s North Maluku province on Thursday, but did not trigger a tsunami alert, the meteorology and geophysics agency said.

The agency initially issued the quake at 7.1 magnitude before revising it down to 6.8, Wahyu Kurniawan, official in charge at the agency, told Xinhua news agency.

The quake jolted at 3.49 p.m. with the epicentre at 89 km northwest Daruba village of Pulau Marotai district and the depth at 112 km under sea bed, the official said.

“For this quake, we did not issue a tsunami warning,” he added.

Indonesia is frequently hit by earthquakes as it sits on a vulnerable quake-impacted zone called “the Pacific Ring of Fire”.

–IANS

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World

George Floyd Death: Numerous arrests in NYC as protests continue

Floyd”s deaths has also triggered protests around the world including in France, the UK, New Zealand, Finland, Denmark, Greece, South Africa and Germany.

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George Floyd Death Protest

New York, June 4 : New York City police officials have made numerous arrests and even resorting to force after a curfew began amid continuous protests against the death of the unarmed African-American man, George Floyd at the hands of a white police officer in Minneapolis last week.

Faced with a third night of demonstrations involving thousands of New Yorkers who defied the curfew to protest against the Floyd”s death, the police on Wednesday night decided to act more harshly after giving them an hour”s notice when curfew came into force at 8 p.m., reports Efe news.

New York Police Department (NYPD) Chief of Department Terence Monahan told reporters that the police had adopted a more aggressive approach in order to quickly disperse the groups of protesters.

The police resorted to force in Brooklyn, using batons, rubber bullets and tear gas with the aim of dispersing protesters and arresting numerous people to enforce the curfew.

The detainees were then loaded onto buses of the city”s Department of Correction.

After protesting peacefully for more than an hour in front of the Mayor Bill de Blasio”s”s residence in Manhattan”s upper east side, the demonstrators began marching south of the city, until the police began charging through the crowd at Third Avenue and 50th Street at about 9 p.m.

It was police officials on bicycles who first charged the protesters and then those on foot began to arrest dozens as loudspeakers on police vehicles reminded the demonstrators of the curfew orders and demand everyone leave the area.

Arrests also took place in Union Square.

The marches on Wednesday seemed to be more organized than the chaotic protests of recent days with private vehicles offering water and food as well as hand gel and masks to try to reduce the spread of coronavirus.

“Hands up, don”t shoot” and “Justice Now” were some of the most heard slogans on the streets.

Protests were also held in other cities around the country, including Washington D.C., Oakland, Chicago, Miami, Tampa and Orlando.

Floyd”s deaths has also triggered protests around the world including in France, the UK, New Zealand, Finland, Denmark, Greece, South Africa and Germany.

–IANS

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India

India-Aus ties have always been close: Modi on summit

The two leaders are likely to review the broad framework of bilateral strategic ties and explore ways to expand cooperation in areas of trade and defence.

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Modi Scott Morrison

New Delhi, Jun 3 : India-Australia ties have always been close, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said ahead of his first-ever virtual summit with his Australian counterpart Scott Morrison on Thursday.

“Glad to be joining the first India-Australia Virtual Summit with you, PM @ScottMorrisonMP. India-Australia ties have always been close,” Modi wrote on Twitter.

“As vibrant democracies, from Commonwealth to cricket to even cuisine, our people-to-people relations are strong and the future is bright,” he said.

Modi was responding to a tweet by Prime Minister Morrison, who said he is looking forward to catching up with his Indian counterpart for the virtual summit.

The two leaders are likely to review the broad framework of bilateral strategic ties and explore ways to expand cooperation in areas of trade and defence.

The two countries are also expected to finalise a landmark agreement for reciprocal access to military bases for logistics support in the summit besides sealing a number of other pacts.

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