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Canadian ex-minister calls for spending despots’ riches on refugees

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OTTAWA: A former Canadian foreign minister wants money seized from despots to be used to help refugees — a proposal being pitched Thursday to UN ambassadors and international organizations in New York.

The recommendation of the World Refugee Council is one of several in a 126-page report “A Call to Action: Transforming the Global Refugee System.”

The group, led by former top Canadian diplomat Lloyd Axworthy, was formed in 2017 at the height of the global refugee crisis to come up with fresh ideas to try to deal with record-setting migration.

There are currently an estimated 68.5 million people driven from their homes by war, famine and disaster, according to the report’s authors.

“So many people are on the move, and the financial system of supporting and protecting refugees is under real risk,” Axworthy told media.

“We need to start to go after the bad guys,” he said by telephone during a stopover en route to New York.

Seizing their ill-gotten gains, he said, “would free up new money for refugees, but also challenge the impunity of (dictators) who deprive their citizens of staying in their own homes, in their own communities.”

It would also take financial pressures off host nations, he said.

The report calls for making culprits accountable for “persecuting and displacing their own populations.”

“Oppressive regimes, those responsible for much of the forced migration, are in many cases corrupt, stealing from their treasuries and placing the money and other assets offshore,” it says.

 

 

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Politics

US elections: No proof of Russian meddling

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MOSCOW: Russia on Friday once more dismissed the Mueller report, saying that it failed to present evidence of any meddling by Moscow in the 2016 US election.
“As a whole, the report as before does not present any reasonable proof at all that Russia allegedly meddled in the electoral process in the US,” Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told journalists, saying it contained “no new information”.

 

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Arts & Literature

Works of 100 writers to be published in the year 2114

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SEOUL: International award-winning South Korean author Han Kang has been named the fifth author in a Norwegian government-sponsored project to collect the works of 100 renowned writers, one author a year, and publish them in 2114.
Han, a 2016 Man Booker International Prize winner for her novel The Vegetarian, is also the first Asian writer to be selected as a contributor to the Future Library project, which aims to connect current and future generations through writing.
The project was launched in 2014 by a Scottish artist with the concept of conveying the meaning of hope and trust by connecting time and life. The previously selected writers are Margaret Atwood of Canada, David Mitchell of Britain, Sjon of Iceland and Elif Shafak of Turkey.
A thousand trees have been planted in a forest near Oslo to supply paper for the special anthology of books, which will be printed in a century’s time, according to the Future Library. Han will donate her unpublished text in a handover ceremony due to be held in Oslo on May 25. Her manuscript will be disclosed in 2114.

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Asia

Countering Indian hybrid warfare techniques

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Nation united against Indian designs

KARACHI: Security analysts Friday warned people to be wary of the content on social media, as the Indian hybrid war against Pakistan was trying to cause discontent and confusion among the masses.

Addressing a seminar “Post Pulwama-Threat of Hybrid Warfare and What Next,” organized by Karachi Council on Foreign Relations (KCFR) speakers including former Ambassador Najmuddin A. Shaikh, former Foreign Secretary, Dr. Asif Mahmood, Dr. Huma Baqai, Associate Dean at IBA and senior defence analyst Ikram Sehgal were unanimous in their opinion that India has been seen piling up and imposing instruments of hybrid warfare on Pakistan. The situation demanded that the nation must be cautious in expressing their views on social media that may not only counter the national cause but also lead to manipulation of a national perspective.

Mentioning that hybrid warfare is a blend of conventional and irregular warfighting techniques that may also employ other non-kinetic means to undermine an enemy’s strength, speakers said Pulwama incident was a manifestation of their very technique. Modi Government was said to have taken advantage of it by blaming Pakistan for the terrorist act hence not only attempting to gain world sympathy but also affecting issues involving the two neighbors and taking up the issue at international level.

Hybrid Warfare, the elaborated was more catastrophic in essence as it pervades into multifaceted frontiers of the enemy’s territory; psychologically undermining its decision-making capabilities. I also have ability to systematically crippling its financial and information networks using cyber technology, economic strangulation via coercive economic diplomacy and leveraging its influence over international actors and institutions meanwhile, developing and maintaining a robust defense posture.

It was emphasized that Pakistan needed to get around the world and show the Indian intelligence agency’s vile face and its role in getting innocent human beings, getting killed in and outside India. Mumbai carnage, attack on Indian Parliament, attack on Pathankot Brigade Headquarters were cited to have been already proven as False Flag Operations conducted by RAW and other covert agencies of India to promote and protect their interests.

The speakers were firm in their suggestion that Pakistan must continue its support, morally and politically so that Kashmiris were essentially allowed to exercise their right to a plebiscite as narrated in UNSC Resolutions. On the occasion 12 of the UN Security Council resolutions starting in April 1948 were extensively discussed explaining as how much important it was to get Kashmir issue resolved in a democratic manner through a free and impartial plebiscite.

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