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Pakistan, EU to jointly combat terrorism 

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ISLAMABAD: Reaffirming that terrorism continues to pose a threat to states and societies across the globe, Pakistan and the European Union (EU) on Thursday reiterated their resolve to jointly combat terrorism in all its forms and manifestations.
They also reaffirmed their solidarity with the victims of terrorist attacks across the world. This affirmation was made during the seventh round of Pakistan-EU Political Counter-Terrorism dialogue held in Brussels, Belgium, a message received here from Brussels said. On the EU side, the dialogue was chaired by Pawel Herczynski, Director for Security Policy (EEAS), while Pakistan side led by Ahmad Farooq, Director General Counter-Terrorism. The parties held in-depth discussions and exchanged perspectives on a wide range of counterterrorism issues in a cordial and constructive manner. The EU side appreciated Pakistan’s increasing efforts in fighting terrorism and emphasized the need for increased engagement on preventing and countering radicalization.
The parties agreed on the need for a comprehensive approach to terrorism, based on the rule of law and protection of human rights and for enhancing cooperation in dealing with violent extremism in all its aspects, including preventing and countering radicalization and addressing the root causes of thereof. The parties furthermore underlined their joint commitment to regional peace and stability. Both sides underlined the importance of interfaith dialogue and harmony as a key to promote tolerance and social cohesion in society. Recalling the commitments of all states for the implementation of UN General Assembly and Security Council resolutions relating to international terrorism, both sides reaffirmed their support for the implementation of the United Nations Global Counter-Terrorism Strategy in a balanced and integrated manner. The parties also reiterated their determination to work together in promoting international cooperation through fora such as the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) and the Global Counter-Terrorism Forum (GCTF).
They discussed the ongoing EU-Pakistan cooperation in the area of counter-terrorism and agreed to explore further avenues of bilateral collaboration including the exchange of best practices and potential co-operation projects in mutually agreed areas. The EU and Pakistan agreed that the next meeting of the dialogue will take place in Islamabad in 2019. The dialogue followed the adoption of EU Council Conclusions on Pakistan on November 19, 2018. They made reference to the wish of the EU to strengthen cooperation in the field of security and defense and commended the resumption of dialogue in this area, and the holding of the annual Dialogues on Counter-Terrorism and on Non-Proliferation and Disarmament. The Pakistan-EU Non-Proliferation and Disarmament dialogue was held on November 28, 2018.

 

Crime

NAB arrests four Revenue officials for selling govt land

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QUETTA: National Accountability Bureau (NAB) Balochistan on Tuesday arrested four officials of Provincial Revenue Department including Ex Tehseeldars, Naib Tehseeldar and Patwari for selling government land in Gwadar.

According to a statement, the accused included Ex-Tehseeldars Gwadar Mohammad Jan Baloch, Mohammad Jan Jamaldini, Naib Tehsildar Agha Zafar Hussain and Abdul Hafeez Patwari in connivance with other revenue officers and private persons tempered revenue record and sold the land causing huge loss to the national exchequer.

Taking action on evidences surfaced during the probe into the matter, DG NAB Balochistan Mohammad Abid Javed issued arrest warrants of the accused.

They were held and shifted to NAB Balochistan office.

Further probe was underway.

 

 

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Turkey issues warrants for soldiers over FETO links

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ISTANBUL: Turkey is seeking over 50 serving soldiers across the nation for their suspected links to the Fetullah Terrorist Organization (FETO), the group behind the 2016 defeated coup, judicial sources said on Tuesday.

Istanbul Chief Public Prosecutor’s Office issued the warrants for 53 active-duty soldiers, who are accused of communicating with FETO members through pay phones and land phones, as part of a probe into FETO presence in Turkish Armed Forces.

Police launched simultaneous operations in 15 provinces, including Istanbul, for the suspects working for the gendarmerie branch of Turkish Armed Forces, as well as Land, Air and Naval Forces Command.

Police hunt for the suspects is ongoing across the country.

According to the Turkish government, FETO and its U.S.-based leader Fetullah Gulen orchestrated the defeated coup of July 15, 2016, which left 251 people martyred and nearly 2,200 injured.

Ankara also accuses FETO of being behind a long-running campaign to overthrow the state through the infiltration of Turkish institutions, particularly the military, police, and judiciary.

 

 

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Victims of Church sex abuse go global with fight for justice

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PARIS: After years of struggling alone or finding support in national groups, survivors of sex abuse by priests have formed a new international alliance to pressure the Catholic Church to face up to its crimes.

The group, called Ending Clerical Abuse (ECA), brings together activists from dozens of countries on several continents, and will be mobilised in Rome this week when Pope Francis hosts a hotly awaited summit on tackling the wave of child sex abuse scandals shaking the Catholic Church.

“It’s a momentous and a historic movement… to bring a global and unified voice,” one of its co-founders, Peter Saunders, told media.

“This is the first truly global initiative.”

Saunders’ personal story is among countless others suffered by people who grouped together to form ECA last June, including survivors from Chile, Poland, Switzerland, France, Italy, the Democratic Republic of Congo and other countries.

“I was abused at seven years old by a family member. I was also sexually abused by two Jesuit priests at my secondary school at about 12 years of age,” he said.

The same priest targeted his brother Michael at the same school six years before him, and died aged 55 after a lifelong battle with drug and alcohol abuse.

“I think the Church has been resisting change for many, many years and I think at long last the Church is beginning to bow to the pressure put on by survivors, by our media colleagues around the world, and by public opinion,” he added.

The group’s objectives include forcing the Church to take a “zero tolerance” approach to paedophilia, working to overturn the statute of limitations on abuse cases, and supporting victims in areas where speaking out remains difficult, such as in various African and Asian countries.

 

 

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