South Asia

U.S. Inspectors: $7.3 Million Base Constructed to House Afghan Border Police Found “Nearly Empty”

January 29, 2013

“Inspectors who visited the site to ensure construction by Omran Construction, Consulting and Engineering Co was carried out according to contract found only a dozen Afghan personnel at the camp and nearly all of the buildings locked, SIGAR reported.”

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Boat Carrying Asylum-Seekers from Sri Lanka Crashes En Route to Australia; At Least 2 Passengers Drown

January 29, 2013

“Twenty survivors, including a four-year-old boy and a 10-year-old girl, are on the island of Nusa Kambangan near the coastal town of Cilacap after being rescued by fishermen.”

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India’s Central Bank Lowers Lending Rate to 7.75% and Decreases Bank Minimum Required Reserve Ratio

January 29, 2013

“In another move, the Reserve Bank of India cut its inflation and growth forecasts for the rest of the fiscal year through March, indicating that slowing growth is now a bigger concern than high inflation.”

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One of the India Gang Rape Suspects to be Tried as a Juvenile

January 28, 2013

“The suspect did not possess a birth certificate — a common occurrence in India where many babies are born at home and not in a hospital. In such cases, school records are often used as proof of age or identity.”

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Center for Civilians in Conflict Report Criticizes the Afghanistan Army’s Poor Handling of Civilian Deaths

January 28, 2013

“The Center for Civilians in Conflict, a Washington-based research organization, said in its report that “the capacity of the Afghan government and security forces to prevent and respond appropriately to civilian casualties is woefully underdeveloped.””

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India and Pakistan Resume Cross-Border Travel in Kashmir

January 28, 2013

“India and Pakistan are resuming cross-border trade and travel in the Jammu region more than a fortnight after ties were suspended following military tensions in Kashmir.”

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At Least 50 People Injured in Clashes Between Islamist Activist Protesters and Police in Bangladesh

January 28, 2013

“At least 50 people including policemen were injured in Bangladesh on Monday as Islamist activists protested against the prosecution of their leaders on charges stemming from a war of independence 40 years ago, police and witnesses said.”

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Pakistan Attorney General Admits to Holding 700 Militants Without Charge

January 24, 2013

“”There is a military operation in Waziristan. Under the law we cannot try these 700 people, nor can we release them, unless the operation is over,” Attorney General Irfan Qadir told the Supreme Court.”

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India Government Panel Recommends Changes to Protect Women From Sexual Assault

January 23, 2013

“The suggestions ranged from banning a traumatic vaginal exam of rape victims to ending political interference in sex crime cases.”

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Afghan President Karzai Forms Delegation to Investigate Afghan Prison Torture Claims

January 22, 2013

“The UN report, based on interviews with hundreds of detainees held in 89 facilities between October 2011 and October 2012, details 14 abusive practices, including the twisting of genitals, extracting fingernails and electric shock.”

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India Warns Kashmir Residents to Prepare for the Possibility of a Nuclear Attack

January 22, 2013

“A series of deadly skirmishes along the cease-fire line in recent weeks has heightened tensions between the two countries, and the timing of the advisory surprised many residents in Srinagar, the main city in Indian-controlled Kashmir.”

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Pollution Problem in Kabul, Afghanistan, Worsening With No Solution In Sight

January 22, 2013

“In Kabul, Afghanistan’s capital, a city built for half a million people, the wartime population has swollen to five million.”

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Lawyer for India Rape Defendant Requests to Move Trial Outside of New Delhi

January 22, 2013

“The case has gripped India, prompting protests in the capital and other cites over the treatment of women and criticism of the way sexual assault cases are dealt with.”

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Senate Democrats Carl Levin (MI) and Jack Reed (RI) Urge President Obama to Keep More Troops in Afghanistan Past 2015

January 22, 2013

“Officials say the White House is considering keeping between 3,000 and 9,000 troops in the country, a lower range than initially recommended by the top commander in Afghanistan.”

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United Nations Report: Afghanistan’s Spy Agency is Operating a Secret Prison to Avoid International Scrutiny

January 22, 2013

“The report also includes a statement by an unnamed NDS official in Kabul who confirmed the agency’s use of torture and secret facilities for detainees.”

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