Connect with us

SOUTH ASIA

Obama Nominates Indian-American To Key State Department Post

Published

on

Obama Nominates Indian-American To Key State Department Post

Obama Nominates Indian-American To Key State Department Post

Washington:  President Barack Obama has nominated Puneet Talwar, a noted Indian-American Middle East policy specialist to a key diplomatic post as the assistant secretary of state for political military affairs.

Talwar has been a Special Assistant to the US President and Senior Director for Iran, Iraq and the Gulf states on the White House National Security Staff since 2009.

Nominating him along with several others to key administration posts Tuesday, Obama said: “I am grateful that these talented and dedicated individuals have agreed to take on these important roles and devote their talents to serving the American people. I look forward to working with them in the coming months and years.”

In his new job at the Bureau of Political-Military Affairs, State Department’s principal link with the Defense Department, Talwar will provide policy direction in the areas of international security, security assistance, military operations, defence strategy and plans, and defense trade.

In July, Obama had nominated another Indian American, Nisha Desai Biswal,currently assistant administrator for Asia in the US Agency for International Development, to succeed Robert Blake as assistant secretary of State for South and Central Asian Affairs.

Both Talwar and Biswal need to be confirmed by the Senate. Once confirmed they along with Dr Raj Shah, Administrator, USAID, the highest ranking Indian American in the Obama administration, will constitute a powerful triumvirate of Indian Americans at the State Department.

Talwar had earlier served as a senior professional staff member on the committee on Foreign Relations of the United States Senate (SFRC) from 2001 to 2009.

From 1997 to 1999, he was the chief advisor on the Middle East to vice president Joseph R Biden, who was then the chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.

Talwar served as a member of the Department of State’s Policy Planning Staff from 1999 to 2001. From 1992 to 1995, he served as a foreign policy advisor to House member Thomas C Sawyer and from 1990 to 1992, as an official with the United Nations.

Talwar received a BS from Cornell University and an MA from Columbia University’s School of International and Public Affairs.

Earlier this year, Foreign Policy magazine named Talwar as one of the 50 Most Powerful Democrats in Foreign Policy.

 

Continue Reading
Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

SOUTH ASIA

Pakistani Anti-graft body wants travel ban on Nawaz Sharif, kin

Published

on

Nawaz sharif

Pakistan’s anti-corruption watchdog has asked authorities to place ousted premier Nawaz Sharif, his daughter and son-in-law on the Exit Control List to prevent them from leaving the country.

The National Accountability Bureau (NAB) sent a formal request to the ministry of interior. The interior ministry officials confirmed that the NAB wrote that names of Sharif, his daughter Maryam Nawaz and son-in-law Capt (retd) Muhammad Safdar should be put on the Exit Control List (ECL), which listed individuals not allowed to leave Pakistan.

The NAB argued that as the trial of the three nears its conclusion, it is feared that they would leave the country.

Earlier, a similar request to place name of finance minister Ishaq Dar on ECL was not accepted, allowing him to go to London and never return.

Sharif, 68, and his family this week filed an application with the accountability court seeking a fortnight’s exemption from personal appearance from February 19 onwards to let them go to London to see Sharif’s ailing wife. Three cases were filed against Sharif and his family last year, including Avenfield properties, Azizia & Hill Metal Establishment, and Flagship Investments.

Maryam and Safdar are accused only in Avenfield properties case. The NAB had filed two supplementary references against Sharif, his sons Hasan and Hussain regarding Al-Azizia Steel Mills & Hill Metal Establishment and Flagship Investment cases.

Continue Reading

SOUTH ASIA

Pakistan “breaches obligations’ on nuclear arms reduction, UN court told

Published

on

Pakistan-breaches-obligations-on-nuclear-arms-reduction,-UN-court-told

The Hague: Pakistan is violating its “obligations” to the international community by failing to reduce its nuclear arsenal, the Marshall Islands told the UN’s highest court on Tuesday.

The small Pacific Island nation is this week launching three unusual cases against India, Pakistan and Britain before the International Court of Justice.

Majuro wants to put a new spotlight on the global nuclear threat, its lawyers said yesterday, by using its own experience with massive US-led nuclear tests in the 1940s and 1950s.

“Pakistan is in breach of its obligations owed to the international community as a whole,” when it comes to reducing its nuclear stockpile, said Nicholas Grief, one of the island nation’s lawyers.

Islamabad and its nuclear-armed neighbour India “continue to engage in a quantitative build-up and a qualitative improvement” of their atomic stockpiles, added Tony deBrum, a Marshallese government minister.

DeBrum warned that even a “limited nuclear war” involving the two countries would “threaten the existence” of his island nation people.

Pakistan and India have fought three wars since independence from Britain in 1947, two of them over the disputed Himalayan territory of Kashmir.

In 1998, the rival neighbours both demonstrated nuclear weapons capability.

The ICJ’s judges are holding hearings for the next week and a half to decide whether it is competent to hear the lawsuits brought against India and Pakistan — neither of which have signed the 1968 nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT).

A third hearing against Britain — which has signed the NPT — scheduled to start on Wednesday will be devoted to “preliminary objections” raised by London.

The Marshalls initially sought to bring a case against nine countries it said possessed nuclear arms: Britain, China, France, India, Israel, North Korea, Pakistan, Russia and the United States.
Israel has never admitted to having nuclear weapons.

But the Hague-based ICJ, set up in 1945 to rule in disputes between states, has only admitted three cases against Britain, India and Pakistan, because they have accepted the ICJ’s compulsory jurisdiction.

Pakistan’s lawyers did not attend Tuesday’s hearings.

It did however file a counter-claim against Majuro’s allegations saying “the court has no jurisdiction to deal with the application” and insisting that the case is “not admissible”, said ICJ President Ronny Abraham.

Continue Reading

SOUTH ASIA

Bangladesh to drop Islam as official religion following attacks on Hindus

Published

on

Bangladesh to drop Islam as official religion following attacks on Hindus

New Delhi: Bangladesh is likely to drop Islam as its official religion following a series of attacks on people from other faiths in the country. The country’s Supreme Court is hearing a plea challenging the status of the official religion of the country to Islam.

Bangladesh, which was declared a secular country after its formation in 1971, was declared an Islamic country following a constitutional amendment in 1988.

According to a report in the Daily Mail, the plea has challenged the declaration of Islam as the national religion of the country.

The move is being supported by leaders from the minority communities like Hindus, Christians and Muslim minority Shiites.

Bangladesh has 90 per cent of Muslims, 8 per cent Hindus and remaining constitutes Christians and Muslim minority Shiites.

In last month, a Hindu priest was hacked to death following an attack on a temple in Panchgarh district. Two others were seriously injured in the attack. There have been several lethal attacks on writers and bloggers.

According to a report in the Independent, Islamist groups Jumatul Mujahedeen Bangladesh and Ansarullah Bangla Team are believed to have carried out at least seven attacks on foreign and minority people in Bangladesh in the past year.

terror-on-hindus-in-bd-viii

Temple

Hindu-temple-attacked

Continue Reading

Follow us on Twitter

Trending

css.php
Skip to toolbar